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Five Questions with New Granicus CEO Mark Hynes

Plus, resolution on what the name of the company will be.

With a new name, a new logo and a new chief executive, the dust around the GovDelivery-Granicus merger is starting to settle.

The merged company, which will be called Granicus, hired outside for its new chief executive officer: Mark Hynes, who has held leadership roles at several software firms and has a degree from Harvard Business School, will fill the position.

The former CEOs of both companies will stay on. Jason Fletcher from Granicus will become the new company’s chief operating officer, while GovDelivery’s Scott Burns will be a senior adviser.

Hynes’ experience is mostly in business-to-business and business-to-consumer technology, including a stint at the marketing automation firm Digi-Net and the founding of IT services company Xevo. His most recent job was chief strategy and development officer of Altisource, a company delivering solutions for real estate investors, buyers and lenders.

His résumé, then, is light on familiarity with government. But what it does include is two decades of experience leading software companies with suites of services extending beyond the startup stage.

And that’s where Granicus is. Since Vista Equity Partners acquired Granicus and GovDelivery and then merged them in the latter half of 2016, the company has been poised for growth. Leadership at the companies see their products as complementary — in fact, before they were merged GovDelivery noticed that its constituent messaging services were driving Web traffic to Granicus’ legislation management and meeting video products.

Below are five questions with Hynes:

As the new CEO, where will you be based?  

I will be based primarily out of the Denver office, but will spend significant time in the St. Paul; Washington, D.C.; and U.K. offices. I also look forward to spending time on the road meeting and listening to our clients in their offices, as well as at our Digital Engagement Customer Roadshow. 

What drove your decision to join the company?

There are three primary reasons that drove my decision to join the team. First, the legacy companies of GovDelivery and Granicus have been mission-driven organizations since their early beginnings. Measuring success by awareness of life-saving programs, participation in important public meetings, and overall improvement of people’s lives was something that called to me from a personal perspective, and something I’m thrilled about aligning with from my personal worldview. Second, the idea of a combined platform of these innovative solutions that GovDelivery and Granicus have been delivering caught my attention as something truly special – it’s leading tech expertise coupled with the strongest security that is available to an industry that provides more data than any other. Third (and most importantly to me) was the team. Every part of this organization from product to marketing, engineering to finance, operates with the sophistication and drive that is making a real impact in the govtech space. I’m hoping my experience in high growth software companies and building them to scale can add another piece to the already very talented team.

You’re coming from a technology background, but not a government one. Did you have any hesitation in signing on to lead a company focused on government? What do you see as the difference between working for government clients and working for business or consumer clients?  

While my background has been most recently in the commercial space, I think there are more similarities than differences in adoption and use of technology solutions and what we’re seeing in government. Both industries are turning to advanced SaaS software solutions to address their interests in becoming more efficient, improve communications with their constituents, and measure outcomes. That being said, I absolutely have a lot to learn about the nuances about government, especially as it relates to procurement. Thankfully, I am in good hands with a stellar team made up of leaders from government and in the gov tech space, including multiple GovTech [Top] 25 Award winners and former local, state and federal government employees. In the coming months, I’m also looking forward to learning from clients directly.

Where do you see your background experience overlapping with Granicus?

Granicus is mission-driven, and was built by strong leaders who had a vision for leveraging digital solutions in government to increase efficiency and better communicate with the public. I think a unique aspect of where my experience overlaps well with Granicus’ success is the understanding of what it means to drive tech adoption in a highly regulated industry where security and innovation must go hand-in-hand. This knowledge, in addition to my experience bringing products to market and scaling them to new levels, are parts of why our paths aligned so well.

Where do you see the company headed? 

In the immediate future, we’ll be focused on integrating the legacy GovDelivery and Granicus products so that they best serve our customers. Our digital solutions will work best when they work together, and so we’ll be focused on educating customers on how to best leverage our tools to support their important work. 

Ongoing, you can count on us to continue to innovate to new levels. With our latest investment from Vista Equity Partners, the largest software investor in the world, we’ll be able to add expertise and resources dedicated to innovation — all while providing the same top-tier level of customer care that our clients are used to.

I’m most excited about working with current and future government customers to reach these new levels. Our technology is built for people who are changing our world, and I’m thrilled to be a part of their efforts.

Ben Miller is the associate editor of data and business for Government Technology. His reporting experience includes breaking news, business, community features and technical subjects. He holds a Bachelor’s degree in journalism from the Reynolds School of Journalism at the University of Nevada, Reno, and lives in Sacramento, Calif.