Starting a new life, Post Zope Corporation

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Starting a new chapter is a common expression. Lois and I have had a different expression to describe the transformations we’ve experienced as a couple and as individuals, over the 30 years that we’re together. We say we’ve lived many lives. We’re about to start a new life (to us, not just a new chapter in an existing one).

In 1997 I contacted Digital Creations, a small Python shop in Fredericksburg, VA, to ask if they were looking for an investment. I was looking to put some personal money into an innovative software company. We hit it off, but I was new and naïve about angel investing and they were overly-cautious and the deal never happened.

I fully credit my involvement with that initial failure for giving me the taste for technology venture capital. A couple of months after our deal disintegrated, I made my first investment. That turned into me founding a venture capital firm. I never lost my interest or desire to be involved with Digital Creations. I approached them again in 1998. Digital Creations ended up being the fourth investment in my new VC firm.

In 2001, we renamed the company Zope Corporation, to reflect the success that our product, Zope, had in the market. Most of the people reading this will probably have never heard of Digital Creations.

Also in 2001, the company repurchased the shares of two venture capital firms that invested in late 2000. That left the company with limited financial resources in a very difficult time. Lois and I dedicated ourselves to operational roles to help rebuild the company. We believed that we were making a one-year commitment to working at/with/for the company. Here we are, nearly 11 years later.

Back in 2001, it was my idea to make the offer to buy out the other VCs. This time, my old playbook was employed by rest of the management team, who felt that they were in a position to make me a similar offer. After working out myriad details, a deal was struck. The transaction closed yesterday afternoon.

Lois and I are no longer involved with Zope Corporation, after it was the central part of our working lives in our most recent past life.

We wish them continued success in everything they do, as a company and as individuals who we have known and loved for a very long time.

A natural question is “What will you do in your next life?”. The honest answer is I have no idea. After all, I’m a newborn again. I have some time before I’m expected (or able) to walk. Come talk to me when I’m crawling and we’ll see if a plan has formed.







30 responses to “Starting a new life, Post Zope Corporation”

  1. Martin Avatar

    congratulatons to you both as you begin crawling again! Hopefully you’ll use some time to get some deserved relaxation!
    xo – martin

  2. hadar Avatar

    Relaxation? What’s that? The only thing I’m sure of is that you probably aren’t experienced enough at relaxing to give me lessons. 😉

  3. Dick Hardt Avatar
    Dick Hardt

    Looking forward to seeing where you and Lois focus your energies next!

  4. hadar Avatar

    I’m surprised you assume we have any energy left. 😉

  5. Billblevins Avatar

    Wishing you and Lois ALL THE BEST!

  6. Tom Von Lahndorff Avatar

    I’m happy to have been part of your past life! Also looking forward to the next one. Keep me in mind, whatever it may turn out to be.

  7. hadar Avatar

    I hope it goes without saying that we wish exactly the same for you! OK, I said it, so it no longer needs to go without saying! 🙂

  8. hadar Avatar

    Thanks Tom, it was a pleasure and privilege to have you be part of that past life. If it’s possible in any way to have you ride with us on the next segment, it would again be our privilege.

  9. Abpartain Avatar

    You both form an amazing team…not just as business savvy investors—but more importantly–as two individuals who go out of their way to positively impact others!!

  10. Cathy Fasano Avatar
    Cathy Fasano

    Congrats!  Here’s hoping you have fun and exciting projects in the future!

  11. hadar Avatar

    Thanks Cathy! 🙂

  12. hadar Avatar

    You’re too kind. We haven’t felt that any of it has been “out of our way”. It’s exactly the way/path we’re traveling. 🙂

  13. Larry and Mary Beth Craven Avatar
    Larry and Mary Beth Craven

    Mary Beth and I look forward to seeing more of Lois and you “Up North”.

    Congratulations on your new lives….you earned it!!!!

  14. hadar Avatar

    Just try and hide from us! 🙂

  15. Donnaespositoltd Avatar

    How will the Hampton inn survive? Welcome home neighbors!, we are so happy for you all!
    On a college visiting tour … We will be home Saturday.
    Hugs, Donna, Tony and Jessica

  16. Aaron P Lehmann Avatar
    Aaron P Lehmann

    Good luck in your new lives!  I haven’t given up hope on having you guys over for supper, so don’t be strangers

  17. hadar Avatar

    It’s definitely time to “short” Hilton stock (they own Hampton Inn). 🙂

    Good luck with the colleges, and see you soon!

  18. hadar Avatar

    Hope does indeed spring eternal! 😉

    We’re looking forward to catching up whenever we can!

  19. Fetefurnishings Avatar

    Congrats!! Wishing you and Lois all the best!

    Karen Beverly

  20. hadar Avatar

    Thanks Karen! It’s been way too long!

  21. Robby Berthume Avatar
    Robby Berthume

    Congrats Hadar!  Exciting times!  Hope you and Lois enjoy this time of discovery!

  22. hadar Avatar

    Thanks Robby! I’m hoping the “enjoyment” starts next week. Still too much accounting and distributing going on this week. 🙂

  23. Phil Hotchkiss Avatar
    Phil Hotchkiss

    Congrats Hadar and Lois! I love the notion that you are adventuring to crawl. Cheers to the next chapter – cant wait to see u guys soon, it’s been far too long.


  24. hadar Avatar

    Thanks! Far too long is an understatement. 😉

    Maybe we’ll even make it out to CA one of these days. Haven’t been there since 2004!

  25. Matt Jacobus Avatar
    Matt Jacobus

    Congratulations on your newfound freedom! I can’t wait to hear what’s next. Perhaps you need a short break from the 5 hour commute before you even consider. All my best to you both.

    Funny that we’re down in SC and ran into Gregg Z who broke the news before I saw your post. News on you two travels fast!

  26. hadar Avatar

    That’s hysterical! That Gregg can’t keep any secrets. 😉

    Let me know when you’re back, lots to catch up on!

  27. Mamaslive Avatar

    Mazel-tov to you and Lois at your new beginnings. You don’t have to hurry and learn to crawl….it’ll come when the time’s right. Sending you both love, prayers and peace. It’s truly a blessing to have both of you in my life.

  28. hadar Avatar

    Having heard about you for years, the pleasure of finally meeting you was great. We’re both very happy that you live in a city that’s part of our semi-regular “tour”. See you soon!

  29. thingles Avatar

    Wow! Congrats on closing one chapter and opening another! 15 years is a long time to be involved in any company, much less a company in tech, Internet, etc.

    By the way, I didn’t realize Zope was all Python! I’ve recently become a Python proponent myself. Our newest platform at 8thBridge is built entirely in Python.

    IIRC, you guys mentioned that once you had more time you would consider a trip to the Winnipeg Folk Festival! So, shall we start planning? 🙂

  30. hadar Avatar

    I was a huge Python-head when I was at UBS, which is the only reason I discovered Zope Corp / Digital Creations to begin with!

    We will definitely consider the trip, just not this year. 😉 Also, Lois isn’t much of an “outdoors-woman”, so there’s that to consider as well.

    You’ll have a chance to bend our ear soon enough! YAY! 🙂

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