Bill SpruillBill Spruill and His Theorem for a Better Angel Way, Published January 3, 2012.

Bill Spruill is an entrepreneur and angel investor in Raleigh. He is passionate about helping build the Triangle into a thriving startup ecosystem, something that will only occur with a healthier class of angel investors. Today, angels follow a model of making bold bets with their money and holding on for extended periods in hopes of windfall payouts. Bill believes that’s the wrong mindset. Bill proposes the Spruill Theorem for reasonable angel returns. It represents, I think, a better angel way.


Mark Spencer 1

Mark Spencer and Digium: Contemplations on Luck and Success, Published October 30, 2012.

Mark Spencer invented Asterisk, a technology disrupting the multi-billion dollar telecom industry. He founded Digium, a rapidly growing business based in Huntsville. This Auburn grad is a success by anyone’s definition of the word. But when I interviewed him to talk about that success, he balked. “What is success?” Mark asked. He wanted to talk more about luck. I took the bait.

In this article we look at the role of luck versus that of preparedness when considering why businesses succeed or fail.


Tom Pirelli ESI BabyTom Pirelli and His Exceptional Software Business, Published September 19, 2012.

This story features Tom Pirelli, an entrepreneur whose ESI product I used to compete against when selling MMIS software to hospitals. He’s an impressive dude who got fired for liking Apple II computers too much, parlayed his Princeton computer science background into bootstrapping the industry’s first hospital-centric supply chain software company, and won over his customers by dressing like Baby New Year (pictures included) and standing shoulder-to-shoulder with them conducting overnight inventory counts.

Tom provides a remarkable story of building a software business the right way and giving the world plenty of humor along the way.

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