Mike Crest

Chief Executive Officer, Optanix

Mike Crest brings more than 20 years of IT industry experience to Optanix, where he guides the overall strategic vision of the company to lead its growth and innovation. 

Prior to joining Optanix, Mike served as CEO of Arcserve, a provider of data backup and recovery solutions, where he led the team that took the company independent. Before that, he held executive level roles at CA Technologies, one of the largest independent software corporations in the world, and also spent eight years in management positions at Corporate Express/ASAP Software where he drove sales and built key relationships with IT sourcing partners.

Mike holds B.S. degrees in Business Administration and Communications from Minnesota State University.


Robert Kennedy

Director and Vice Chairman, Optanix

Robert Kennedy has more than 30 years of executive experience in the telecommunications and software industries.  He previously served as CEO of Optanix, directing the launch of the company and the delivery of its innovative IT operations management software.  Prior to Optanix, Robert served as company director and later as Chairman of ShoreGroup, an innovator in the design, deployment and management of major corporate networks.  

Robert’s background includes founding and building successful technology businesses, including raising financing valued at over $650M.  He is an IP telephony industry veteran and visionary, having been directly involved in the industry since the earliest days of research and development.  He was the cofounder, Vice Chairman, President and Chief Operating Officer of NetSpeak, a pioneer in IP telephony and the creator of the world’s first IP-based contact center. Robert directed NetSpeak through its initial capitalization and IPO, and was intimately involved in launching innovative new products and in forming strategic partnerships with companies such as Creative Labs, Bay Networks, Siemens, MCI and Motorola.  He has been recognized as a Computer Telephony “Star of the Industry” for his major contributions to the telecommunications and Internet telephony fields.   Robert also served as an Executive Vice President and board member at TPI International, helping to build the company into the nation’s largest independent telecommunications equipment and services supplier. He later assumed the role of senior operating officer at TPI, directing its operating companies and more than 14,000 employees.


Andrew Kowal

Partner, Francisco Partners

Andrew Kowal joined Francisco Partners in 2001, and focuses primarily on investments in the hardware and systems sectors.

Prior to joining Francisco Partners, Andrew was a member of Princes Gate Investors, the private equity arm of the Institutional Securities Division of Morgan Stanley, where he was responsible for the identification, evaluation and execution of private equity transactions in a variety of industries, including information technology.

Andrew serves on the board of directors of Corsair, Ichor Systems, Procera, ShoreGroup, and Source Photonics. He previously served on the board of directors of ADERANT, MagnaChip, Metrologic Instruments, and Mitel Networks.

Andrew holds a BS in Economics with a Finance concentration from The Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania, summa cum laude, Beta Gamma Sigma National Honors Society.


David Golob

Chief Investment Officer, Francisco Partners

David Golob joined Francisco Partners in 2001 and focuses primarily on investments in the software and services sectors.

Prior to joining Francisco Partners, David was a Managing Director with Tiger Management, where he was co-head of the global technology group and focused in the software industry. David spent seven years as a private equity investor focused on the software industry at General Atlantic Partners and Sutter Hill Ventures. Earlier in his career, he was a management consultant with McKinsey & Company and a Product Manager with Newport Systems Solutions, Inc. (acquired by Cisco).

David currently serves on the board of directors of Avangate, Barracuda Networks, K2, Micro Focus, and Prosper. He previously served on the boards of Aderant, City Index, Foundation 9, Grass Valley, GXS, Office Tiger, Paylease, Primavera, and RedPrairie.

David holds an MBA from Stanford Graduate School of Business, and an A.B. from Harvard College, summa cum laude.


Evan Daar

Vice President, Francisco Partners

Evan Daar joined Francisco Partners in 2011. He previously worked as a consultant with McKinsey & Company in New York, where he focused on the healthcare sector.

Evan holds an MBA from Stanford Graduate School of Business, and a BA in Economics from Columbia University, Phi Beta Kappa.

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