Experiencing Life at the New York Stock Exchange
We were at the NYSE for two consecutive business days, with the first day commemorating the initial trading of the first Intralinks shares. If you ever have the opportunity to be on the NYSE trading floor, don’t miss it. You’re surrounded by traders making markets in technology companies like IBM, McAfee, Salesforce.com and now Intralinks.
15 September 2010
It’s hard to believe that it’s only been just over a month since the Intralinks team rang the opening bell at the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE). The excitement within the halls and offices of Intralinks certainly hasn’t died down. As I had hoped, every employee felt like they were part of this historic company event. And now that some time has passed, it feels like a good time to reflect on those few fantastic days in early August.
We were at the NYSE for two consecutive business days, with the first day commemorating the initial trading of the first Intralinks shares. If you ever have the opportunity to be on the NYSE trading floor, don’t miss it. You’re surrounded by traders making markets in technology companies like IBM, McAfee, Salesforce.com and now Intralinks. It was great to see the “IL” ticker symbol roll across the screen on the “Big Board” for the first time.
A lot has changed at the NYSE since I was last there in 1989. One thing I noticed very quickly was that everything was digital — no more paper and pens to jot down buy and sell orders. Instead, traders walked around the floor with handheld devices connected wirelessly to the NYSE trading backbone. The NYSE has moved from paper to digital. It reminded me of what we’re all about at Intralinks — helping our Enterprise customers move from the “Old Way” of sending paper via FedEx, fax and courier to the “Intralinks Way” of digitally exchanging digital content in a secure, compliant and auditable manner “In the Cloud”.
It brought home to me how far Intralinks has come as a company over the last 14 years. It also put into perspective all the time and energy that our CFO Tony Plesner, our Investor Relations SVP David Roy, other members of my management team and many other Intralinkers put into us becoming a public company. I also reflected on all the Intralinks employees who poured their energy into our growth over the last 14 years who are no longer with the company. I thought of former long-time employees who helped establish Intralinks as the pioneer and leader in cloud-based services such as Thomas Fredell, Bill Conklin and Denise Conn.
Following the first trade, we dove directly into the media spotlight as the newest publicly traded company. I had a lively interview with Mark Haines on CNBC’s “Squawk on the Street,” giving an overview of how Intralinks moves business processes into the cloud, the types of companies that trust us with their important and sensitive information, and our expansion into the enterprise. I enjoyed getting to know Mark. As it was Friday, Mark wore his usual patriotic red, white and blue flag tie. He also ate his way through a small pile of cheese doodles dipped in ketchup — his daily favorite food as he shared with me.
We were back on Wall Street the following business day, a Monday, to ring the opening bell. It was a classic New York event. Seeing the Intralinks banner draped over the front of NYSE in the heart of Wall Street set the tone for what was to follow. With a number of employees looking on, the executive team and our families rang the opening bell at 9:30 on the button. Sharing the occasion further crystallized the fact that thousands of people, including our customers, investors, partners, advisors and vendors, have helped us get to where we are today.
As for the bell ringing itself, I’ve got to say that it was one of the most exciting moments of my life. It signified what Intralinks has achieved over 14 years and was a symbolic “jumping off” point for what we can and will achieve in the future as a new public company.