Jesse Lipson, the founder of ShareFile which he later sold to Citrix where he led development of the larger firm’s Raleigh campus and left earlier this year, is back in the startup business.

Saying he’s ready to go back to work after taking time off for rest, travel and family time, Lipson says he plans to invest as much as $1 million in the new venture called Real Magic.

“My new company is called Real Magic, based on the quote by Arthur C. Clarke that any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic,” Lipson tells The Skinny.

“It is a multi-product SaaS (software as a service) company focused on small and medium-sized businesses. Our first product is called Levitate. Levitate is creating a new category called Professional Relationship Management (PRM), which is an offshoot of the CRM [customer relationship management] market.”

Look for the launch of Levitate early next year, he adds.

Building relationships

So what does Levitate do? It’s there as a tool to boost businesses to success with more than just apps and solutions.

“Levitate helps companies build and maintain the individual professional relationships that ultimately drive the growth of most small and medium-sized businesses,” he explains.

Lipson is convinced Real Magic is not just a wish or a wave of a wand.

“I plan to finance the company myself,” he points out.

“I will continue fund the company as long as it’s hitting our internal milestones and gaining traction. I expect to invest at least $1M into the company over the next 12 – 24 months.”


And Lipson, who sold ShareFile in 2011, is devoting himself full-time to the startup.

“Right now I’m the only full-time employee,” he says.

“We’re working with some outside firms to help with graphic design and sales, and I’m actually doing the software programming right now.”

But jobs will likely be available in the near future.

“I expect to hire about 5 employees over the next six months, and then probably another five to 10 over the following six months if the product is doing well.”

Real Magic is based in at HQ Raleigh, a shared office and services business based in the Capital City. He is a co-founder.

There’s more to the story. Check back Tuesday morning.