“Success has many parents,” writes Steve Hinkson, director of communications at the Council for Entrepreneurial Development. And Robbie Allen, CEO of Automated Insights which made its “exit” through acquisition on Thursday, is proof – as Allen recently told the CED. 

“Mainly, these points serve to remind us that the strongest supporting character in Automated Insights’ success story is this region’s entrepreneurial network,” Hinkson wrote The Skinny shortly after the AI deal news broke.

“Here are some of the things Robbie Allen shared with us at our 30th Anniversary event last year:

  • “Robbie was recruited to Raleigh-Durham by Cisco and credits the supportive environment this region provided with giving him the confidence to strike out on his own and found StatSheet (which later became AI)
  • “In the early days of StatSheet, while they waited for affordable office space to open, CED provided the team with its conference room to use as an office.
  • “Because of a close relationship with CED, two of AI’s key management hires are former CED employees: Adam Smith (Head of Marketing and Business Development) and Corey Waters (Director of Finance, HR and Operations).
  • “AI also drew great support from NCIDEA, as a grant winner and as an investment through IDEA Fund Partners.  IDEA Fund Partners was one of AI’s first institutional investors. 
  • “Automated Insights was also given great exposure to investors and partners through a number of CED conferences as well as other community events.  

“AI worked hard for this outcome, but our community should be proud today as well,” Hinkson added.

“We can draw a line back to the time when this company was just an idea and see all the points where the people and support of our entrepreneurial community helped propel it to success.”

Well said, Steve.

How many startups that have grown to an “exit” or even an IPO can trace some of their success in some way to the CED through an event, mentoring, contacts or maybe just some friendly advice?

That’s the CED mission, is it not – help entrepreneurs find success?

So a tip of the hat to CED staff, its leader Joan Siefert Ross and past CED leadership (especially Monica Doss) for their good work.

Like any organization, CED can’t please everyone. But as the list of successful Triangle exits and IPOs grows, there liklely is some CED connection.

Let’s not forget to salute to Robbie and his team, to NCIDEA and IDEA Fund Partners as well. The AI team made a dream come true. NCIDEA and IDEA Fund Partners believed enough to put money into that dream.

All in all, another great day for the Triangle.