Standing Cloud Acquired by SF’s AppDirect, Will Remain in Boulder

Standing Cloud, a venture-backed startup in Boulder, has been acquired by AppDirect for an undisclosed price, the companies announced Tuesday.

Standing Cloud was developing a marketplace and management tools for cloud-based applications, offering more than 100 applications like WordPress, Drupal, and SugarCRM to clients.

San Francisco-based AppDirect and Standing Cloud were working on very similar products and shared a common vision, AppDirect president and co-CEO Daniel Saks said in a press release.

“With this acquisition, we can join forces to accelerate the speed of innovation and move faster than ever before,” Saks said.

Serial entrepreneur David Jilk founded Standing Cloud in 2009 and was its CEO. The company had raised $10 million from the Boulder-based Foundry Group and Avalon Ventures. Standing Cloud had 12 developers, who will remain in Boulder.

Jilk was not available to discuss the deal on Tuesday morning. The release did not specify his role with AppDirect or how Standing Cloud will be integrated into its acquirer. Currently, Standing Cloud’s website brands Standing Cloud is “an AppDirect company.” We’ll update this story if we learn more.

AppDirect’s head of business development, Paul Arnautoff, told The Denver Business Journal that getting Standing Cloud’s talent was a big reason for the deal.

“We’ve been really lucky that the entire team decided to stay,” he said. “The talent at Standing Cloud was a lot of the motivation for buying them.”

AppDirect is a much larger company, with about 100 employees, sales in 80 countries, and clients including Microsoft, McAfee, Carbonite, and Cisco Systems. The company had raised $11.75 million since it was founded in 2009, and on Tuesday announced it raised another $9 million in a Series B round.

The round was led by iNovia Capital and joined by AppDirect’s prior investors. With the acquisition, AppDirect also becomes part of Foundry Group’s portfolio, which shows that at least part of the purchase was in AppDirect stock.

From a distance, the deal looks similar to another acquisition of a Boulder startup by a San Francisco company, and the two deals share some people in common.

In 2011, Lijit Networks was bought by Federated Media for what was reported to be just under $100 million. Lijit was founded and run by Todd Vernon, a Boulder serial entrepreneur who was an early investor in Standing Cloud. Lijit had raised about $29 million before the deal, and Foundry Group was a major investor. Foundry Group managing director Seth Levine joined Federated Media’s board.

While Vernon eventually left Federated Media to form VictorOps, Lijit expanded and remained in Boulder, kept a measure of autonomy within Federated Media, and became one of the company’s best performing units and a pivotal part of its new strategy.

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