Coradiant acquired by BMC software

On the heels of yesterday’s acquisition of Tungle, BMC Software has announced today that they have acquired Montreal’s Coradiant, which was co-founded by Year One Labs partner Alistair Croll. We are happy that Montreal has managed to win something in the last few days.

The price is currently undisclosed, but the back of the napkin calculation tells me this was a monster one. Probably not as large as the recent Radian6 exit, but sources put this acquisition well in to the 9-figures territory.

This has been a long time in the making as Coradiant’s founding goes back to 1997 when Alistair Croll and Eric Packman founded NetworkShop.

Riding the rails to Waterloo

Go Train 614 - Photo by Danielle Scott
CC BY-SA 2.0 Some rights reserved by Danielle Scott

Why isn’t there a commuter train from Toronto to Waterloo? Ok, you might ask actually ask why Toronto doesn’t have a train from downtown to the airport but let’s leave that for a conversation with more educated politicians and policy wonks.

I’ve spent this morning with startups in Waterloo, hanging out with people at the Communitech Hub, UW Velocity, and a crazy number of super awesome startups (TribeHRvidyard, 17 muscles, Footloose Games, Willet, Cyborg Trading Systems, Will PWN 4 Food and others). I left Toronto at 6:15am to avoid traffic and be in Waterloo before 8am for my first meeting. The drive was approximately 116 km and took approximately 90 minutes (arrived at 7:52am). I couldn’t help think about why there isn’t a train. The distance is just a little more than SF to San Jose (~74km) and double SF to Palo Alto (~51.5km). I can get a Caltrain from San Francisco to Palo Alto or San Jose.

Waterloo - Early Stage Companies

If the assumption is that UWaterloo is a top ranking university (possibly my alumni delusions that cause me to overlook UWaterloo’s non-placement on Times Higher Education rankings). And with more startups like Kik raising money with powerhouses like OpenText, RIM, MKS and Christie Digital. There are less reason for students to have to leave the reason. It makes it more attractive to rent an apartment for the year and stay in Waterloo to manage your costs on your coop program.

Maybe the argument is that the capital is better spent on more programs for entrepreneurs or road infrastructure. But it seems that one of the greatest assets to the Toronto startup community (UW Coop students and graduates) are disconnected by public transportation. I wonder what my UW alumni brethren like Farhan Thawar (@fnthawar), John Green (@johnphilipgreen), Amar Varma (@extremevp),  Brydon Gillis (@brydon), Ali Asaria (@aliasaria), Razor Suleman (@iloverewards), Kunal Gupta (@kunalfrompolar) think about the need for better connections between Waterloo (assuming a stop in Guelph) and Toronto.

RIM acquires Tungle

Congratulations to Marc and the Tungle team. Tungle announced their acquisition by RIM. Tungle had previously raised $1.5M from JLA, Desjardin, and angels and $5M from Commonweatlth. This is a great addition for the RIM team to continue to build out an application suite for the mobile office. Mark MacLeod (@startupcfoprovides additional thoughts and comments on the acquisition:

Clear Problem

Tungle just made sense. Finding a time to meet is a huge pain. This may not be the sexiest, flashiest market, but it is huge. Every business person feels the pain.


We didn’t have this term back in the early days, but Tungle sure went through some pivots. When I joined it was a peer to peer client a la Skype. And it was S-L-O-W.  The service today bears little resemblance to that early product.


All startups but especially SaaS startups should be data driven. Tungle was no exception to this. We even built our own custom system (known as Knudderforce) and tracked daily, weekly and monthly stats. Those stats triggered many actions, automated outreaches, etc.


All good outcomes have an element of luck. I am sure there are many examples in Tungle’s case, but the one that stands out for me is closing our Series A funding in September 2008 just as Lehman Brothers crashed and the markets started tanking. If we had been only a few weeks later we might have had a much tougher time closing the round.

Focus, focus, focus

I’ve seen many teams get distracted as they grow. The CEO is off attending conferences, the company moves from market to market, etc. Tungle was laser focused on solving its’ users’ scheduling needs. At one point we were doing usability sessions every day. We reached out to every new user. We just stayed focused.


When we first were getting started, investors wondered if this was a feature vs. a product. Fast forward a few years and it is on its way to being a full fledged scheduling platform with APIs for other companies to use.

Strategic engagement

An ideal startup for me is one that can develop conversations with potential strategic partners as a natural part of its goto market strategy. This presumes you are building something that is important to the big players and assumes that you have a CEO capable of establishing and building those relationships. This was definitely the case with Tungle and this announcement is just a logical outcome of this reality.

The icing on the cake for me is that this is an all-Canadian deal. The Tungle team will be staying in Canada and continuing to make things happen.

Shared calendaring continues to be a difficult problem as you move to the edge of an organization. Just think about how difficult it is to see availability and schedules of people who are not on your GApps domain or your Exchange Server. Tungle gives RIM a leg up in having tooling like BBM and email and now calendaring that blurs the edge of the organization.