The Download: Data analytics firm AddThis moves its financial officer into the CEO role

September 29, 2013

There’s a new face at the helm of McLean-based social media and Web analytics firm AddThis.

Richard Harris was appointed chief executive last week after joining Add­This earlier this year as chief financial officer.

Harris replaces Ramsey McGrory, who took on the role of chief executive in October 2011, when the company was still known as Clearspring. McGrory will remain with the company in an advisory role.

AddThis has focused in recent years on monetizing big data by working with online publishers and advertisers to identify and target certain audiences based on the content they consume and share on the Internet.

Harris previously founded Mt. Weather Capital, a private equity firm, and RedShift Ventures, a venture capital firm focused on early-stage technology companies.

Farewell, Fenty

The lure of Silicon Valley has taken many entrepreneurs from Washington. Now it has claimed a former mayor.

Adrian Fenty deepened his roots on the West Coast last week when it was announced he will join the Silicon Valley office of law firm Perkins Coie to help expand its emerging company and venture capital practice.

The new job isn’t Fenty’s only connection to the technology mecca. He was made a special advisor at Palo Alto, Calif.-based venture house Andreesen Horowitz last year. Also, The Washington Post’s Reliable Source has previously reported that Fenty may be romantically linked to Laurene Powell Jobs, the widow of Apple founder Steve Jobs.

The former mayor still has connections to Washington, though. As Capital Business reported a year ago , Fenty is a founding advisor at Neil Kataria ’s early-stage investment firm Blue Tiger Ventures .

How’s the weather?

Maryland scored a point last week in the ongoing battle for business with neighboring Virginia.

Maryland’s economic development office said last week that Weather Analytics, a climate and weather intelligence firm founded in 2012, has moved its 10 employees from the commonwealth to Silver Spring, and has received $500,000 in start-up capital from the Maryland Venture Fund.

The pot of money was created as part of Gov. Martin O’Malley’s (D) InvestMaryland initiative. That program raised $85 million to invest in young companies by selling tax credits to large insurance firms.

Steven Overly covers the business of technology, biotechnology and venture capital in the Washington region for The Washington Post and its weekly Capital Business publication. In that capacity, he has written about start-up struggles, investment trends and major drug discoveries.
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