While others look for the quick flip and cash windfall, Jack Newton built his company wanting more. Eight years later, the Deep Cove resident is still in it to win it with one of Canada’s fastest growing start-ups.
Alongside co-founder Rian Gauvreau, Newton established the tech firm Clio in 2008. The company was the first to market with a cloud-based practice-management system for law firms to manage billing and deadlines, garnering enough interest to sew up $27 million in venture capital funding.
“With Clio, we’ve always taken the long view,” Newton explains. “If you build with the long view in mind, you’re setting yourself up for way more success than trying to build a company to be flipped.”
Clio’s reach alone demonstrates Newton’s point: it’s used in more than 90 countries, employs more than 200 highly skilled workers and has offices in Toronto, Burnaby, and Dublin.
Newton’s ace in the hole is employee retention. Perks include an on-site yoga space, light-filled common areas with on-tap beverage selections, an acoustically sealed ping-pong room and foosball tables in the hip Burnaby office (designed by the same team that worked on Hootsuite’s headquarters), along with other employee advantages like topped-up maternity programs.
“You get a real critical mass effect once other people across the country start hearing about this density of talent,” he said. “They’ll seek that out.”
“A really great steak and a nice glass of wine.”
“It’s got to be Maui. The sun, the air, the people. It’s such a great spot.”
Cryptonomicon by American author Neal Stephenson. “It’s a great combination of a great war story and a great technology story.”