In this interview, Bob MacDonald discusses his career at Informix from 1982 through 1996. He was hired by Roger Sippl, the founder of Informix, as a salesman at a time when Informix was the only database product available for the Unix platform. He discusses the transition from selling Informix primarily through VARS and OEM contracts to selling to the end user market and how the compelling economics of running applications using Informix on a Unix platform convinced customers to move away from being locked into proprietary mainframe systems. He described how Informix was revived in the early 1990s after several years of losing market share by a combination of aggressive marketing and the development of a new, technologically-superior version of the database software. The less-than-successful acquisitions of two companies, Innovative Software and Illustra, are covered.
Johnson, Luanne, Interviewer; Editor
MacDonald, Bob, Interviewee
Computer History Museum
Place of Publication
Mountain View, Calif.
MacDonald, Bob; Informix Software; Sippl, Roger; UniForum; Value Added Reseller (VAR); Unix operating system; Siemens; Innovative Software, Inc.; White, Phil; Illustra; Software business history