Who is Scott L. Kauffman, SourceForge (NASDAQ:LNUX)s recently hired CEO?
SourceForge announced the hiring of Scott L. Kauffman on December 4th 2008. On January 5th 2009 Scott Kauffman was awarded a non-qualified stock option to purchase 2,250,000 shares of (NASDAQ:LNUX) at $0.63/share and, of significance, [not] based on performance.
As previously blogged [1.]upon, Scott Kauffman was formerly COO of Blue Lithium, hired in September 2006. Blue Lithium was acquired by Yahoo! within 12 months of Scott Kauffman's hiring in September 2007. Yahoo's press release of its acquisition of Blue Lithium emphasized that it represented an "...Important Next Step in Yahoo!'s Mission to Lead the Transformation of How Advertisers Connect To and Engage With Their Customers...". [2.]
Scott Kauffman has never been a CEO of a publicly-held company although he was "...CEO of AdKnowledge, a developer of web traffic measurement solutions for Internet advertising, where he filed to take the company public after growing it to more than 100 customers, and later negotiated its sale to a majority-owned subsidiary of CMGI....". [3.] In other words Kauffman grew AdKnowledge to approximately the current size of SourceForge but has no experience building a publicly-held company beyond building a 100 employee privately-held company and selling it and setting up a $300 million acquisition of another privately-held Company by Yahoo!, both arguably impressive accomplishments but also equally significant.
On April 21, 2008 Scott Kauffman was appointed as a Director of Ubiquisys, an up and coming major player in the wireless space and a Red Herring Europe 100 Winner, with investors ranging from Google to T-Mobile Venture. However, this huge announcement was conspicuously absent from SourceForge's announcement of Scott Kauffman's hiring. Further investigation with Ubiquisys has confirmed he is no longer a Director (in less than six months maximum of the announcement) but did not provide a reason. Was this fact vetted out by SourceForge's Board of Director's? This fact may (or may not) prove to be significant.
On January 1st, a SourceForge (NASDAQ:LNUX) asset, Linux.com announced they were no longer providing news "...Many of you have commented that our NewsVac section hasn't been refreshed since the middle of last month. Others have noticed that our story volume has dropped off. Changes are coming to Linux.com, and until they arrive, you won't see any new stories on the site.
For legal reasons, we can't tell you yet about what's coming -- but we're not joining forces with Microsoft or any other proprietary software company...". It is January 16th and Linux.com, a SourceForge crown-jewel asset, has not updated its site. It is effectively dead. Perhaps Librenix.com's comment to this article best sums it up "...If the site isn't completely defunct, there's no reason not to put up news items. Even if all of the writers were laid off, you only need one person working an hour a day to keep the site _looking_ alive. The fact that even that token effort isn't being made gives us a clue as to what is happening. -Ray (Librenix.com)
So...what is going on? Is Linux.com witnessing an imminent sale? Is Scott Kauffman in to set SourceForge (NASDAQ:LNUX) up for a sale within twelve months as a quid pro quo to his past?