New Venture Redstar In the Works From ATG Founders
The startup bug just keeps on biting for Joe Chung and Jeet Singh, founders of Cambridge, MA-based Art Technology Group. On the heels of news of Oracle’s $1 billion acquisition of ATG, a developer of software for e-commerce websites, Singh confirmed to Xconomy a growing rumor in the Boston innovation community—that the duo is working on yet another startup.
They’re keeping pretty tight-lipped about what the new venture is all about, but it’s operating under the code name “Redstar” and has been in the works most of this year, Singh says. Matt Beecher of SCS Financial is also part of the founding team.
“I’ll tell you the basic idea– we’re going to build a company that build[s] companies,” Singh says. “Not a venture firm, not an incubator.”
Maybe there’s a clue in ATG, which they launched in 1991 and took public in 1999, at the height of the bubble. Along the way, ATG morphed into a company that built a software platform for e-commerce clients’ websites, but the team started out in multi-media consulting. “As the Web happened in the early 90’s, we started doing Web-specific design, and built a nice little reputation as folks who ‘could think about stuff and actually build it’ (to paraphrase some of our clients),” Singh says. We’ll have to keep our eyes out for what the team will build with Redstar.
Chung and Singh each spent more than decade with ATG. After his departure in 2002, Chung and a few others from ATG (but not Singh) started Allurent, another Web software company targeted at customers in e-commerce. The Cambridge-based firm, which launched in 2004, develops interactive widgets to help e-commerce websites to better engage customers.
Singh’s lifestyle since ATG, meanwhile, has been a bit more rock and roll. Seriously. He moved to St. Barts and recorded three albums with his band The Singhs, originally formed in 2001 under the name Dragonfly. (That’s the Singhs on the beach in the picture above, led by their namesake.)
Stay tuned for more from project Redstar. And in the meantime, feel free to conjecture in the comments section below on what exactly a company that builds companies, but isn’t a venture firm or incubator, might mean from the guys who first built ATG.