The Lacework Leadership Team (L to R) – Chetan Rai, Ulfar Erlingsson, Vikram Kapoor, Mike Staiger, Lindsay Folk, David Hatfield, Jay Parikh, Amy Cronk, Joe Fitzgerald, Andy Byron, Adam Leftik
I am delighted to announce my good friend and world-class technology executive, Jay Parikh, will join me and Lacework as our Co-CEO, starting today. Jay will lead our innovation engine – including our product, engineering, and infrastructure efforts, while I focus on our growth, market expansion, and overall business operations. Together, we’ll drive our strategy; a relentless focus on our customers’ and partners’ success; and build the best team and culture in our industry.
Alongside our exceptional leadership team, growing ecosystem of partners and fellow Lacers across the globe, we are hyper focused on our mission to change security forever, with automation and data, so our customers can innovate with speed and safety.
Nobody can do what Jay does better. He is, simply put, one of the most experienced leaders in the technology industry. His track record, integrity, and work ethic are second to none. He is one of the few people in the world who has architected, built, and operated cloud infrastructure at massive scale. As VP, Head of Engineering and Infrastructure, he enabled Facebook to grow from 300 million people to more than three billion. For a company like Lacework, whose mission is to harness data to build the world’s most advanced cloud security platform at scale, Jay is the perfect fit to lead the innovation engines and partner together to run the business.
“As I was sorting through expanding our leadership team early in my tenure as CEO, I was having lunch with one of our investors, and we were discussing Board composition and other top talent that we should get involved in Lacework. When it came to discussing the top technical, product, and cloud executives on the planet, this investor asked if I knew Jay – the light bulb immediately lit in my mind! Candidly, I thought Jay was still at Facebook having fun building AI, data/storage systems, data centers, subsea cables, satellites, and airplanes!”
I called Jay as I left the lunch, and it didn’t take long for him to become intrigued with Lacework’s core thesis and the opportunity to work together again. At that point, we didn’t know exactly what form the working relationship would take. Would Jay be an advisor, a Board member, or part of the leadership team? My hope all along was that it would be as a partner and Co-CEO, and as Jay learned more, he felt the same.
Both Jay and I have built teams from zero-to-thousands, introduced and scaled disruptive technologies from zero-to-billions in revenue, and led teams of incredibly talented people to win and achieve their personal and professional best toward making a difference. We love this. And while Jay’s background has been deeply rooted in engineering and product, and mine has been in go-to-market and operations, we share the same values and passions. I couldn’t be more thrilled to get to partner with him and the rest of the Lacer nation as a force-multiplier in changing security forever.
Lacework is built based on the belief security, at its core, is a data problem. All credit goes to our Co-Founder Vikram “VK” Kapoor and his founding team for establishing this vision in 2015. This vision underpins the tremendous success to-date and will continue to guide our momentum and commitment to delivering differentiated outcomes for our customers in the future. With VK’s vision, and Jay and I working together to achieve our mission, we are confident we have a recipe for success.
We decided on a Co-CEO model for a relatively simple reason: it gives us increased leadership bandwidth and time to focus on the things that matter most as we continue to scale and grow as a company. It helps us get more done, be in more places, and collaborate with our unique perspectives, all to make better decisions.
Of course, it helps that Jay and I have been friends for more than 20 years. We met in 1999 at Akamai Technologies when the company was just getting started. I was on the GTM side and Jay on technology, as we both worked to establish the west coast presence of the company. We immediately became friends, and as our careers have evolved, we’ve stayed in close touch. He’s one of the first individuals I would call to get input on the companies and products I was involved with. That kind of trust and respect isn’t just invaluable for Co-CEOs – it’s a force multiplier. We believe our partnership will be a catalyst for continued hypergrowth, at scale.
Both of us have also seen up-close the incredible benefits a Co-CEO structure can create. Jay has been a board member for Atlassian for the past seven years, witnessing the successful dynamic between Mike Cannon-Brookes and Scott Farquhar. Aneel Bhushri is a mentor of mine and implemented a Co-CEO structure with great success at Workday. To us, and those who paved the way, it comes down to mutual respect and trust, a shared vision, desire to win, and complementary skill sets. We believe we have all of those things and more.
One of the most important roles of the CEO in company building and scaling is ensuring the right team is in place at the right time. Without the right team to execute together, even the best product market fit or the best GTM engine will run out of gas at worst, or not reach their potential at best.
What’s next? We’ll work together with our growing, talented executive team to build and scale a company with a shared vision, mission, and values. Jay and I will collaborate on the big decisions and individually lead in the areas where we have the most expertise or need the most focus at any given time. We’ll work together to build our long-term strategy and culture. I have always admired Jay’s leadership philosophy, and I can’t wait to co-create with him at Lacework.
With Jay on board, Lacework has the right team in place to scale the company and achieve its mission, all while being an awesome place to work. Our platform is already in use by hundreds of the most innovative, cloud-first development and security organizations on the planet. With the right team in place, and amazing investors behind us, we’re ready to scale the next great security company.
Come join us!