Database Technologies A-B

Babson Professor Ed Marram, Case Director

Sheryl and Larry Overlan, Case Writers

Arthur M. Blank Center for Entrepreneurship

© Babson College, 2000.

Abstract

A young software company about to be harvested nearly comes to a tragic end when a truck accident kills a key employee and severely injures one of the owners. When he learns of the accident, the corporate suitor backs out of the pending acquisition since the company's major assets--brains-- are now damaged goods.

The company had successfully navigated through the tough start-up period and was about to experience major growth that attracted several interested buyers. The company specialized in relational database management systems and had several major customers in the Boston area. Eventually, the owner recovers and shores up the company enough to attract other buyers, one of which does buy-out the company. The owner stays on after the acquisition and a clash of corporate cultures creates a new set of issues.

Location of the company: Wellesley, Massachusetts

Years spanned by the case: 1981 - 2000

Industry segments: Software

Stage of the company: Start-up thru post-harvesting

Age of the entrepreneurs: 43 and 45

Key Words: Entrepreneur, entrepreneurship, software, harvesting, growth management, re-engineering, corporate culture

DVD

A DVD is available for this case. One of the principals from the case, Mike Corey, answers questions in a Babson class. Please place video orders through the Arthur M. Blank Center for Entrepreneurship.

Teaching Notes

A seven page case teaching package, written by Ed Marram, is available for this case. The teaching package includes strategies for case presentation, key concepts, solutions to the assignment questions in the case, and suggestions for the most effective ways to work this case into a course.