Successful Exit for Austin Technology Incubator Alumnus Company: Phurnace Software Acquired by BMC Software

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Additional ATI Company Acquisitions in 2009 include Lombardi, eVapt, and Logical Information Machines

Austin Technology Incubator (ATI), a not-for-profit division of The University of Texas at Austin, is proud to recognize alumni company Phurnace Software for its recent acquisition by BMC Software in early January 2010. With this successful exit, Phurnace follows in the footsteps that other ATI companies have taken over the course of the organization’s 20-year history.

The Phurnace acquisition is just one of several exits for ATI alumni companies during the last year. Other recent ATI company exits include IBM buying Lombardi (which grew out of ATI graduate OpenPlus); MagnaQuest buying recent graduate eVapt; and Morningstar buying ATI alum Logical Information Machines.

“That four of our alumni have been acquired over the past quarter gives testimony to the quality of ATI companies. It is especially gratifying to see this happening even during what has been an historic down market,” said Isaac Barchas, overall director of ATI.

Phurnace is an ideal example of the path a company takes within ATI, from the first days of discovering a new technology - an invention targeting a real market need - to company formation and maturation at ATI, to market introduction and solution delivery, to company expansion, to attracting the eye of an acquiring company.

Phurnace founders Robert Reeves, economics major, and Daniel Nelson, executive MBA student, began their journey at The University of Texas at Austin in the 2006 Moot Corp competition. After winning Moot Corp, they joined ATI and began the task of raising capital. ATI’s experienced staff and expert network helped Robert and Daniel refine their business model and prepare the company to compete successfully for talent and capital.

As a result of these efforts, experienced software executive Larry Warnock joined the Phurnace team as president and CEO in 2007. Soon after, venture capital firm DFJ Mercury offered financial support, and Phurnace’s first round of venture capital funding. In quick succession, Phurnace closed another round of funding with S3 Ventures in 2008 and celebrated acquisition by BMC in January 2010.

"ATI team members and advisors met frequently with the Phurnace team early on to help them focus their goals and develop and execute their plans. The coachability of the founding team and the sound business concept that their company was founded on made it clear to us that they would succeed." said Erin Defosse, former acting ATI Director, who shepherded Phurnace through their earliest days at ATI.

“Only in an entrepreneur-friendly town like Austin, and with the help of the Austin Technology Incubator, could we have grown from a simple idea to a hyper-growth software company in just a few short years,” said Larry Warnock, Phurnace CEO. “We recognize and appreciate the part ATI played in every step of our development, and success.”

About Austin Technology Incubator
The Austin Technology Incubator is a nonprofit unit of The University of Texas at Austin that harnesses business, government and academic resources to provide strategic counsel, operational guidance and infrastructure support to its member companies to help them transition from early stage ventures to successful technology businesses. Since its founding in 1989, ATI has worked with over 200 companies, helping them raise close to $750 million in investor capital. ATI is a key program of the IC2 Institute at The University of Texas at Austin. For more information, visit

About Phurnace Software, Inc.
Phurnace Software helps companies drive revenue and dramatically reduce costs by accelerating the deployment of business critical applications into physical environments, virtual images or to cloud computing providers. Leveraging patent-pending technology, Phurnace automates web application deployments – from installation to deployment to upgrades – eliminating manual, error-prone processes and delivering tangible ROI within weeks. Based in Austin, Texas, Phurnace is funded by S3Ventures, DFJ Mercury and other private investors.
Phurnace and the Phurnace flame logo are trademarks or registered trademarks of Phurnace Software, Inc. in the United States and other countries. All other names are the trademarks or registered trademarks of their respective companies.


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Melissa Rabeaux
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