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Datto Ex-CEO Austin McChord Joins VC Firm General Catalyst

McChord, who started a storage service that morphed into an MSP power house with the 2017 acquisition of Autotask, will take his entrepreneurial experience to venture capitalist General Catalyst to help entrepreneurs grow their businesses.

Austin McChord, the storage whiz who founded Datto and led the company through its acquisition by an investment firm and its subsequent acquisition of Autotask, is joining venture capital firm General Catalyst to use his experience as an entrepreneur to work with startups.


McChord, aged 33, founded storage and MSP services platform company Datto in 2007 in his parents basement and went on to sell the company 10 years later for an estimated $1.5 billion.


Starting Wednesday, McChord officially joins Cambridge, Mass.-based General Catalyst as a venture partner, the venture capital firm said in a blog post.


[Related: Datto CEO Austin McChord Stepping Down]


General Catalyst in 2013 led a $25-million round of funding in Datto. General Catalyst members Steve Herrod and Paul Sagan joined Datto's board of directors after the investment.


General Catalyst said in its blog post that McChord will join the company's Boston-area office.


"[He] will focus on identifying and investing in companies in the infrastructure and SaaS, software-enabled hardware, and industrial IoT spaces. True to the General Catalyst credo, Austin is an entrepreneur looking to help other entrepreneurs reach the next stage of their growth," the venture capital firm wrote.


Neither McChord nor General Catalyst were able to provide more information by press time.


It is no surprise that McChord would get involved in bringing his experience to other entrepreneurs, said Mark Calzone, president of Ash Creek Enterprises, a Stratford, Conn.-based MSP and long-time Datto channel partner.


"Austin is a super intelligent guy," Calzone told CRN. "When he stepped down as CEO of Datto, I knew it wouldn't be long before he was doing something else."


McChord has the entrepreneurial insight that makes him a perfect fit to be working together with General Catalyst's Herrod and Sagan, Calzone said.


"With his monetary position after selling Datto, and especially with his mindset, Austin will be able to apply his experience to help mentor others," he said.


Datto, founded originally as a provider of storage services for the MSP community, was in 2017 acquired by Vista Equity Partners for an undisclosed sum estimated in some reports to be about $1.5 billion.


At the same time, Datto acquired Autotask, a leading provider of professional services automation technology, from Vista Equity Partners, making it the leading provider of technology and services to MSPs.


Tim Weller, who had been serving as president and chief operating officer of Datto, earlier this month, took the reigns as CEO of Norwalk, Conn.-based Datto.

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