Tech Moves: Amplero names AWS vet as CTO; Allen Institute hires CFO from RealNetworks; and more


Andrew Toner. (Amplero Photo)

Amplero, a marketing platform fueled by artificial intelligence, announced the addition of Microsoft and Amazon vet Andrew Toner as the company’s CTO this week.

Toner comes to the position after working as a principal engineering manager in Microsoft’s cloud division for a year. Throughout his career, he has spent more than nine years working for the company in both the U.S. and the U.K.

He also spent six years leading engineering teams at Amazon, including in AWS, and has served as a software architect for the Seattle Sounders and a mentor for the 9 Mile Labs incubator.

He will drive engineering and operations strategy for Amplero, a particularly important role as the company is preparing to expand its platform.

“Seattle is a hotbed for data-centric and AI technology advancements, and Amplero is no exception. They are at the forefront of the emerging artificial intelligence industry, and the work they are doing with machine learning and multi-arm bandit experimentation is completely transforming the way brands engage with their customers,” Toner said in a press release. “I am excited to join such an innovative group that is paving the way for this new category of marketing.”

Marjorie Thomas. (LinkedIn Photo)

— The Allen Institute announced this week that Marjorie Thomas will join the institute as CFO on May 8.

Thomas is currently the CFO of media delivery software company RealNetworks, where she has worked for the past two years. She has also held senior financial positions at Intuit, Sony Electronics and Hewlett Packard.

As the Puget Sound Business Journal reports, the job listing for the CFO position details a plan to double the headcount of the Allen Institute in a surge of growth.

“We are fortunate to have such an experienced, accomplished and visionary business leader join our executive team,” Allen Institute CEO Allan Jones said in a press release. “I look forward to working with Marjorie as the Institute continues to accelerate foundational research and make a transformational impact on science around the world.”

Maria Karaivanova. (Madrona Photo)

— Madrona Venture Group announced the addition of two new employees: Maria Karaivanova joins the firm as a principal, and Alice Ryder will serve as the company’s director of investor relations.

Karaivanova joins the company from Bay-Area IT services provider Cloudflare, where she spent five years leading business development. She also has past experience at Intel and Boeing. She will use that technological expertise to evaluate investment opportunities, focusing on enterprise and security.

Alice Ryder. (Madrona Photo)

Ryder was previously the VP of investor relations at King Digital Entertainment, which has produced mobile games including Candy Crush. She has also held leadership positions at Expedia and Clearwire. She will work with Madrona investors and continue to build out the firm’s C-suite program, which connects C-level leadership with Madrona portfolio companies.

“Both Maria and Alice embody what we look for at Madrona, experts in their field who have a passion for working effectively with entrepreneurs and innovative ideas,” said Tim Porter, managing director, Madrona. “While they have been on board just a short time, each of them has already made meaningful contributions, and we are looking forward to working together in the coming years.”

Ryan Windham. (Cedexis Photo)

— Portland-based Cedexis — a well-funded startup that manages the transfer of things like app data, video, and other content — announced the promotion of Ryan Windham to CEO.

Windham was previously Cedexis’ VP of product and strategy, prior to which he spent three years in leadership and executive roles at F5 Networks. Cedexis’ current CEO, Scott Grout, will become the company’s executive director.

“A window of opportunity has opened for Cedexis, and I, along with the company, plan to move quickly and assertively to meet the challenge. Today’s DevOps teams are looking for truly cloud-native solutions to ensure reliable, efficient, and massively scalable application delivery for modern application architectures; Openmix provides exactly the platform to meet that need. We truly are in the right place at the right time and I look forward to leading the charge for the great change ahead at Cedexis,” Windham said in a press release.

Don Antonucci. (LinkedIn Photo)

— Don Antonucci, previously the president of Seattle-based healthcare provider Regence Blue Shield, announced this week that he is leaving the company to serve as the chief business development officer for San Francisco-based digital healthcare company 10xHealth.

Antonucci had been a leader in various Regence branches for seven years. At 10xHealth, he will oversee business development for a young cloud-based digital health service that focuses on bringing down healthcare costs for its customers.

“Today’s insured healthcare markets are ripe for transformation because premiums are too high and too much healthcare is suboptimal,” Antonucci said in a press release. “Poor outcomes, wasteful workflows and high error rates account for at least 30 percent of what we do in healthcare and as much as 70 percent of what we spend. I believe the adoption of 10xHealth’s advanced IT and risk management solutions will enable the nation’s most innovative health insurers to lead their markets with a ‘best care – best cost’ competitive position and accelerate their growth in share, revenues and earnings. Having the opportunity to join the team and help scale the adoption of these advanced solutions is something I wanted to be a part of.”

Paul Farmer. (The Laurel Group Photo)

— Pyramid Analytics, an Amsterdam-based developer of a business intelligence suite, announced that it has hired Paul Farmer as the company’s new CFO. Farmer is based in Bellevue, Wash.

Farmer previously served as CFO of the San Francisco-based mobile marketing company Swyrv. At Pyramid, he will oversee the company’s global financial operations. His hiring was announced by executive talent search firm the Laurel Group.

— Ossia, a Bellevue, Wash.-based startup developing wireless charging technology, added several new executives this week. Tim Beard, a former investment banker, joins the company as chief financial officer. He has held VP positions at Deutche Bank, Merril Lynch, and more.

Doug Stovall has been named chief revenue officer. He was previously the CRO at marketing and advertising firm Mobivity.

Preston Woo was hired as VP of corporate development and strategic alliances. He previously spent a year as the CFO of robotics company Sarcos, and formerly worked in business development at Bellevue-based invention lab Intellectual Ventures for three years.

“Tim, Doug, and Preston are part of the team that will change the way world uses power,” Ossia CEO Mario Obeidat said in a press release. “Our technology is tested and more than ready for deployment. Our newest executives have the experience and skill sets to commercialize and scale real wireless power quickly.”

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