Autotask CEO Godgart Takes New Role, As Successor Named

Mark Cattini

Autotask has hired a new CEO to succeed Bob Godgart, who is stepping down from that position to take the newly created position of Chief Visionary Officer, according to the company.

To succeed Godgart as CEO, the managed services platform vendor tapped Mark Cattini, a former Lotus executive who is also a former president and CEO of MapInfo and Awareness.

"I've known Mark for a while, known his reputation. He grew a very successful software company [MapInfo] in our section of the Northeast. He took the company from about the size of our company to about $200 million [in annual revenue]. He's a professional CEO," Godgart said.

The moves will allow Godgart to focus on Autotask’s strategic direction while Cattini runs the business, said Godgart. "You know me, I'm a creative entrepreneurial spirit. I figure out how to get things going. I was looking for more help on the board. Mark finished up his last gig [at Awareness]. I showed him what we were doing. He said 'Bob, this is a great company.' We started talking a little more. Managed services is new. It takes a creative and visionary person to figure out what that needs and I can't do both. Here I've got a guy, an A+ player in my mind."

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Cattini most recently resigned from Awarness after nearly a year on the job because of the long weekly commute between the Albany, N.Y., area and New York City and had planned to take some time off for the first time in more than 25 years before Godgart changed his mind, he said. "We talked a lot about it and it came to a pretty quick decision," Cattini said.

Cattini ran MapInfo for seven years before eventually selling the company to Pitney Bowes in 2007 for $500 million. Following the acquisition, he served as president of Pitney Bowes Marketing Services, a division of Pitney Bowes Corporation, and was a member of Pitney Bowes’ leadership team. Prior to that, he helped Lotus build its business in far-flung geographies such as Eastern Europe and Africa.

Next: To Sell Or Not To Sell?

Cattini will be tasked with helping Autotask expand its international business. As for his experience selling a company? Well, Godgart and Cattini both said it's not in the company's immediate future, but they didn’t exactly rule it out either.

"My view of what we want to do is continue to build out as quickly as possible. We'll do that through careful and thoughtful management and focus on customers and build great products for them," Cattini said. "My sense of what to do with the company is there's long way to go before thinking of that. Is [going] public an option? It could be. A sale is always an option if the buyer is right. But not one of us is giving that a serious thought right now."

About 20 percent of Autotask's new customers come from outside the U.S., a figure that the company hopes to expand greatly in 2011. "I think we see opportunity internationally. That's an exciting opportunity. We'll probably look [first] at English speaking companies: Canada, Australia and the U.K.," he said.

Autotask, based in East Greenbush, N.Y., is on pace to grow the business 30 percent in 2010 after growing it 20 percent in a tough economy last year. "We believe we can exceed that [30 percent growth] next year. We're positioned to do that," Godgart said. "Part of my taking on the key visionary role is figuring out what we want to do next. We have a series of new products we'll be rolling out next year. Things that are very innovative and not been done before. I've been in the business for 10 years. Now I get to work on the business."