Keith Krach, the 57-year old CEO of DocuSign, technically doesn’t have to work anymore.
At age 26, he was the youngest VP ever in the history of General Motors. In 1995, he sold his first startup called Rasna Software for $US500 million. A year later, he launched another startup called Ariba, an online procurement software company that was later acquired by SAP for $US4.3 billion.
So for the better part of the last decade, Krach took a break from all operation roles, travelling the world and taking various board seats instead. It seemed hard to imagine him jumping back into a full-time job running a company.
But that’s exactly what he decided to do in 2012, when he took the CEO position at DocuSign, a company founded in 2003 that offers electronic signatures for transactions and document verification. He was already its chairman for two years by then, but it was a short conversation with his wife that really made him want to ditch his semi-retirement and come back doing what he calls the “CEO thing.”
“My wife told me, ‘When you go to a DocuSign board meeting, you’re so excited. And when you come back from it, you’re even more excited. I’ve never seen you having this much fun,'” Krach told Business Insider. “And now I’m having the time of my life, as you can see.”
DocuSign’s e-signature technology has the potential to make all paper signing obsolete. It allows users to sign papers electronically, right on to your laptop or smartphone, in a secure way, speeding up the approval process that would have taken days or weeks under a paper format. Businesses love it too, as more than 100,000 companies across 188 countries already use it.
“DocuSign is an opportunity to change the way business is done. Every company, every department, and every person is a potential customer,” Krach said.
To further fuel its growth, DocuSign announced on Tuesday that it’s raised $US233 million in funding led by Brookside Capital and Bain Capital Ventures. That brings the company’s total raised to $US440 million.
Our source familiar with the matter said today’s funding values the company at $US3 billion.
Krach didn’t disclose the financials of the company, but admitted that his company didn’t necessarily need the money now. “I’ve always followed the philosophy, ‘Raise money when you don’t need it,'” he said.
Krach also dismissed questions about going public, saying he’s more interested in the long-term goals of the company, and that an IPO is simply a “financing event.”
But the quality of investors so far suggest that DocuSign is seeing healthy growth and an IPO might not be too far off. Its list of investors reads like a who’s who list of Silicon Valley’s top VCs: Google Ventures, SAP Ventures, Salesforce, Samsung Venture Investment, Wellington Management, Kleiner Perkins and Accel Partners, among others.
“These are some of the most sophisticated, powerful investors on the planet, so I think it’s a validation to our customers,” Krach said.
But for Krach, ultimately, it all comes back to having fun at his job. “I came back because I really saw an opportunity to change the way business is done and to build something that’s built to last,” he said. “And the last reason is to have a lot of fun.”
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