[continued from the home page]
…at each. In my early years, I could be found on the municipal golf course in Palm Springs, California picking from plentiful lemon trees and selling lemonade on the second hole. Little did I know that this would be the start of my entrepreneurial career. I have spent my entire adult lifetime building companies. My greatest skill is identifying unique marketing opportunities and driving customer acquisition. My last company accumulated over 50,000 customers and most importantly, over 44,000 unique customer testimonials.
My Curriculum Vitae (Resume)
- Host of Radio Ignite Live
- Certified Zapier Expert Level II
- Drift Certified Expert
- Piesync Certified Expert
- Mailchimp Certified
- PandaDoc Certified
- Authored Pricing Your Practice: The Mindset To Get Paid What You Are Worth
- Insightly “Hero”
- TED attendee (TEDster)
- Licensee and co-producer TEDxAmericanRiviera 2010/2011/2012
- National Association of State Boards of Accountancy (NASBA) National Registry Summit Speaker
- Sage Summit Speaker
- Certified QuickBooks ProAdvisor
- Accountex Speaker
- Teddy Bear Cancer Foundation: Board Member
- Emcee/auctioneer for Saks and the City benefitting Teddy Bear Cancer Foundation
- Emcee for Bears and Bees event benefitting Teddy Bear Cancer Foundation
- Southern California Technology Council: Board Member
- Santa Barbara Chamber of Commerce, Business Leaders Council
- All Saints by the School fundraising committee
- Montecito Union School: Special fundraising committee, technology advisor, emcee and auctioneer for signature fundraising event for 7 years and creator of MUS Idol
- Laguna Blanca prep school technology advisory committee
- Recipient of the Honorary Service Award by the California PTA
- Citrix iBusiness Board of Governors
- Emcee at Convergence (Microsoft campus in Santa Clara) 2010 and 2011
- Recipient of Best Places to Work award from Pacific Coast Business Times
- Two time winner of Best Of in the Santa Barbara Independent for computer repair
- Capstone speaker for USC’s CTM event in San Jose at Sun headquarters
- University of Southern California, Marshall School of Business (USC): For 10 years I was a speaker on business building, marketing and PR
- University of California, Los Angeles, Andersen School of Business (UCLA): For 10 years I was a speaker on Entrepreneuring and Extreme Customer Service
- University of California, Santa Barbara (UCSB): Regular speaker, various topics
- Santa Barbara City College: Regular speaker, various topics
- SBCC Scheinfeld Center profiled speaker
- Dos Pueblos Entrepreneuring course guest speaker
- Anacapa Preparatory School guest speaker
- 3 time finalist Entrepreneur of the Year Ernst & Young
- 2 time finalist Entrepreneur of the Year PWC
- 1 time finalist Entrepreneur of the Year Southern California Technology Council
- Guest speaker at over 100 elementary schools statewide (sponsored by Verizon on behalf of the California PTA) for Poogling Internet Safety and Information Seminars
- Various other schools, colleges, universities and organizations: Regular speaker on Entrepreneuring, Marketing, PR, Extreme Customer Service, management, and other topics.
To do cool stuff, solve problems, make a difference, matter, and have tons of fun doing it working only with amazing people, who want to do the same.
2010 – current: Founder, Chief Clever Officer, 74 Systems (a division of 74 Degrees LLC)
74 Systems is a marketing, technology, workflow and automation company. We make things work in ways you may never have imagined. We help build, grow and manage companies, from prospects to projects. We offer various individual services or choose our comprehensive Ignite System and we can help you with just about anything. Our primary clients are leaders in the accounting and bookkeeping industry, tax professionals, attorneys, service professionals and eCommerce/online businesses. We remain focused so we can leverage our experience and talent, and provide the most value. We help our clients find new clients, manage workflow, tackle the web, transform technology, integrate automation and so much more.
2001 – 2012: Founder, CEO, Make It Work, Inc.
Make It Work® was formed in 2001 to satisfy the need of the fast growing consumer electronics sector. With a focus on extreme customer service, the company grew and doubled in size each of its first 5 years. It’s fleet of red and white Mini Coopers became an iconic part of Southern California freeways.
Major accomplishments in marketing and customer acquisition:
Acquired over 40,000 customers and over 44,000 customer testimonials.
Raised over $4 million in equity.
Purchased/leased over 135 Mini Coopers.
In 2008, The company structured a one of a kind deal with Verizon Communications. The company became the first partner in history to be referred by Verizon field technicians.
In 2009, we created Tech News, powered by Make It Work which aired every Saturday, 1pm on CBS Radio’s KNX 1070 in Los Angeles through February of 2011. In January of 2010, we launched Make It Work which aired every Saturday, 3pm on ABC/Citadel Radio’s KSFO 560 in San Francisco through February of 2011.
In 2011, my team and I launched its offering inside of 20 Costco stores. In May of 2012, the company began planning for deploying to all locations via Costco.com.
Here are a few of our other achievements:
- The company was named Software Services Company of the Year by the Software Council of Southern California.
- The company has been named “Best Of” in computer repair by the Santa Barbara Independent twice.
- It was named 4th Fastest Growing Company in the Tri-counties by Pacific Coast Business Times and Best Place to Work.
- The company made the Inc 500 list in 2007 as the 78th fastest growing IT company in the United States.
- The company created Poogling Internet Safety Seminars for parents of kids in elementary and middle school.
- Eric is also a recipient of the prestigious 40 under 40 award from the same publication.
1999 – 2001: Co-founder/CEO/CMO, Push, Inc.
In September of 1999, I sold my former company and was asked to join the new company as CEO. I helped create one of the highest profile Application Service Providers in the industry, the predecessor to SAAS and cloud computing. While at Push, my focus and dedication was on sales, business development and strategy. As part of an amazing team, I successfully negotiated an equity transaction with KPMG worth 20% of the Company. In addition, my team and I secured a contract with KPMG worth $5.5 million, one of the largest in the industry. I managed the team, building a carrier class datacenter valued at over $10 million and established a partnership with KPMG for branding, distribution, and marketing. As the head of sales, I helped make Push the #1 ASP for sales force automation according to PC/Magazine and #1 hosting partner for SalesLogix (Interact Commerce, now owned by Sage, PLC) by both revenue and seat count. I also helped lead Push to become Microsoft’s #3 revenue producer, a leading and founding partner of Sprint’s Enabling ASP program, a member of Hewlett Packard’s Channels on Tap program, a member of the distinguished Board of Governors for Citrix Systems’ iBusiness iCouncil, and an executive member of the ASP Industry Consortium. During his tenure at Push, I was profiled on the cover of Windows2000 Magazine, various press releases from Sprint, Hewlett Packard, and Citrix, various feature articles in the Santa Barbara News Press, Tech Republic, ERP Supersite, Netopia, Newsedge, Netscape News, CNET, ASP Street, Yahoo, Morningstar, HRIMMALL, The Street, Webharbor, ASPNews.com, Thin Planet, ASP Island, SAM Magazine. The company was also profiled in various case studies by Citrix, SalesLogix and Hewlett Packard. In April of 2001, I sold my interest in the Company.
- Assisted Chairman in the raising of ~$10,000,000 in financing much from an equity investment from KPMG, LLP;
- Negotiated and closed a $6 million contract with KPMG LLP for over 1000 seats;
- Negotiated a distribution agreement with KPMG to sell directly into their channels leveraging their brand and client base;
- Became the #1 Sales Force Automation ASP (according to PC/Magazine);
- Built, managed and motivated a highly successful sales team;
- Designed and implemented many high profile, very successful marketing campaigns;
- Named a member of the Board of Governors for the iBusiness Program by Citrix Systems, 1 of 4 companies of a pool of over 125. Responsibilities included advising Citrix C level executives on burgeoning new industry;
- Sat on numerous panels, featured on the cover of Windows2000 Magazine and have spoken at numerous industry conferences.
1995 – 1999: Founder/CEO/CMO, Make It Work, Inc. (first generation)
Make It Work designed, built and supported local area networks on Windows servers. The company was considered innovative as Novell was the leading software for such implementations during this period. Make It Work also designed and managed custom software projects for customer relationship management and accounting. Make It Work’s custom software solutions soon would become a major revenue generator and focus for the company.
Make It Work began to expand its offerings and skill set by embracing server based computing. Partnered with Citrix and Microsoft, Make It Work began installing and maintaining Citrix WinFrame/MetaFrame solutions for centralized deployment of applications to any device, over any connection, available anywhere in the world.
In its final year, Make It Work became the 42nd Citrix PLATINUM partner, awarded to only 42 out of 8800 partners. As a Platinum partner, our relationships with Citrix grew and we worked directly with their executive team, including CEO and Senior Vice Presidents of all product lines and services.
- Began as a one man technician and programmer and grew the business fast;
- Due to levels of enterprise sales, MIW became the #1 Citrix reseller in Central California, achieving Platinum status afforded to only a handful of Citrix partners worldwide (only 42 firms of 8000);
- Created and directed Thindex, a leading server-based computing seminar event educating the IT community on thin client and server based computing with partners such as Citrix, Microsoft, HP, Symantec and IBM;
- The business was accepted to Garage.com in 1999 and sold weeks later.
1992 – 1995: Senior Vice President, CMO, Investors Rights Association
- Technical consulting, client management system development;
- Advised clients, assisted in case preparation.
I was hired by IRA to assist in the filing of over 250 cases stacked in banker’s boxes in the company’s offices. I built a Microsoft Access database that allowed each case to be managed for filing deadlines, mail merge, and customer relationship management. In 30 days, all 250 cases were ready for filing and were successfully submitted to the National Association of Securities Dealers and the American Arbitration Association.
I continued to expand and manage the custom software as the company grew. Once the application was in full production, I began to build out tools that could be used for research and case development, as well as presentation tools for hearings. Using a laptop and a LCD projector (state of the art at that time), I began working with the attorneys and experts to build an electronic case presentation system, illustrating the facts using images, video, statistics, charts and graphs. This led to presentation development for seminars and customer meetings.
1989 – 1992: Education Marketing Representative, IBM Corporation
- Developed and managed student, faculty and staff sales programs throughout Central Coast colleges and universities including: UCSB, Santa Barbara City College, Westmont College, Cal Lutheran, and Cal Poly, SLO;
- Achieved record sales for my territory;
- Was offered several top positions with IBM prior to my departure;
- One of the youngest IBMers in history.
I was hired by IBM to build and manage the sales program for colleges and universities on the Central Coast of California, including: UCSB, Cal Poly, SLO, Cal Lutheran, Santa Barbara City College, Westmont College and others. I recruited the sales team, managed day to day activities, established a marketing budget, held sales seminars at the campuses and continued to successfully grow the sales for the program.
During this time, IBM was going through its largest layoff period in history and I was one of only 4 remaining (of 144) IBMers at the Santa Barbara office before it closed in 1995. I was offered a variety of positions with IBM in their Los Angeles office, but declined so that I may complete my degree at UCSB. I accepted my diploma jacket at graduation with 44 unneeded, additional units, but lacking a single lower division course that I was unable to complete due to a meeting at IBM in Los Angeles. I never got my diploma, officially and it never mattered.
1991 – 1995: University of California, Santa Barbara
- B.A*., Law and Society (Political Science) *lacking a lower division course, thanks IBM
(Worked as an IBM Education Marketing Representative, full time during college and paid my own way through college.)
1987: Santa Barbara City College
- IBM Internship
1987: Ohio State University
1986: Kent State University
I’m a dad and a husband. I love the kitchen. I’m also an accomplished public speaker, a motivator, and have the ability to make decisions and think on my feet in an extraordinary capacity. I’m a total geek, and I know as much about technology as Gretzky knows hockey. I am well-versed and highly experienced in enterprise relationship building, funding, legal, financial planning and modeling, and marketing. My passion runs deep for anything I’m involved in. I believe in 100% dedication, focus and pure integrity to shareholders, employees, family and friends. I have and understand the balance necessary in life to ensure success and happiness. I’m also a TEDster, an avid fan of sushi, anything on Food Network after 5pm, and world travel.