Aaron Levie

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Aaron Levie
Aaron Levie, Co-founder and CEO, Box.jpg
Levie at a speaking engagement in 2011
Born Aaron Winsor Levie[1]
(1986-12-27) December 27, 1986 (age 27)[2][not in citation given]
Seattle, Washington, USA
Residence Los Altos, California
Alma mater University of Southern California[3]
Occupation CEO at Box
Known for Co-Founder of Enterprise Cloud Software Box[4]
Website
www.box.com

Aaron Winsor Levie (pronounced /ˈærən ˈlɛvi/[5]) (born 1984) is an American entrepreneur. He is the co-founder and CEO of the enterprise cloud company Box,[3] which as of 2012 is used by more than 11 million individuals and 120,000 businesses worldwide.[6][7] His net worth is estimated at $100 million.[citation needed]

Early life and education[edit]

Aaron Levie was born to Ben and Karyn Levie[8] in Boulder, Colorado in 1984. He grew up on Mercer Island and graduated from Mercer Island High School.[citation needed] Levie attended the University of Southern California before taking a leave of absence in 2005 to start cloud storage company Box.[8][9]

Career[edit]

The idea for Box originated as a college business project that Levie was working on in 2004. The project examined cloud storage options for businesses and after contacting several organizations to ask how they are storing their content and data, Levie came to the conclusion that the market was fragmented. Levie saw an opportunity to build an online file storage business as a way for individuals to access and store documents and files.[8]

In December 2005, during his junior year at USC, Levie took a leave of absence to launch Box (originally called box.net) with his friend and Box CFO, Dylan Smith who was attending Duke University. At the time, Box was a storage service where users could pay to store their files in the cloud.[8]

Levie and Smith incorporated Box in April 2005 while operating the company out of Smith’s parents’ house on Mercer Island. Soon after, they moved the company to Berkeley, California. Levie and Smith first secured angel investment for Box from Texas billionaire Mark Cuban after a cold e-mail.[3][10][11]

In 2007, as the consumer cloud storage marketplace was becoming increasingly crowded, Levie and Smith decided to shift Box from a consumer service to one focused on selling to businesses (cloud storage).[citation needed]

As of 2014, Box reports that 40% of Fortune 500 companies are paying Box customers.[12] The company is a privately held company headquartered in Los Altos and backed by several venture capital firms and investors such as Andreessen Horowitz, Bessemer Venture Partners, Draper Fisher Jurvetson, General Atlantic, Meritech Capital Partners, U.S. Venture Partners, and Salesforce.com. Box customers include P&G, McAfee, Pandora and Six Flags Entertainment.[13][14] The company filed for IPO on March 24, 2014.[12][15]

Box expanded its operations into Europe in 2012, with the opening of its first office in London, England.[16]

Speaking and contributed writing[edit]

Levie has spoken at industry events such as Fortune Brainstorm Tech, Dreamforce, LeWeb, RSA, MobileBeat, GigaOm Structure, TechCrunch Disrupt and DEMO. He has also written articles on innovation in the technology industry for publications such as The Washington Post, CNN.com, Fortune, Forbes and Fast Company.[17][18][19][20]

Awards and recognition[edit]

In 2012, Levie was named one of Fast Company’s Generation Flux Leaders. Fast Company also placed him on their Most Creative People in Business list for 2011. Inc. Magazine called Levie one of the Top 30 Entrepreneurs Under 30.[21][22] He also received honors from The Silicon Valley/San Jose Business Journal (40 Under 40) and The Churchill Club.[23] Under Levie’s leadership, Box itself has received several industry awards, is included on Deloitte's Technology Fast 500 list in 2011 and 2012. Box was one of the San Francisco Business Journal’s Fastest Growing Private Companies in 2010 and 2011.

References[edit]

  1. ^ http://www.bizapedia.com/people/AARON-LEVIE.html
  2. ^ "Aaron Levie". Box.com. 2014. Retrieved 2014-04-02. 
  3. ^ a b c Liedtke, Michael (28 February 2011). "Investing in a Box: $48M Bet On Storage Service". The Seattle Times. Retrieved 23 August 2012.  – via HighBeam (subscription required)
  4. ^ Matt Rosoff (2011-08-29). "This 26-Year Old Founder Is Raising $100 Million To Take On Giants Like Microsoft - Business Insider". Articles.businessinsider.com. Retrieved 2012-04-07. 
  5. ^ http://video.cnbc.com/gallery/?video=3000086538&play=1
  6. ^ Maltais, Michelle (8 May 2012). "Out of the Box with CEO Aaron Levie". LA Times. Retrieved 23 August 2012. 
  7. ^ "Box raises $125M for aggressive growth around the globe". 
  8. ^ a b c d Cassidy, Mike (17 February 2011). "Cassidy: Silicon Valley start-ups provide their own education". San Jose Mercury News. Retrieved 19 February 2014. 
  9. ^ Holland, Joel (2010-07-16). "I'm an Entrepreneur; Get Me Out of Here!". Entrepreneur.com. Retrieved 2012-04-07. 
  10. ^ "Bill Robinson: Aaron Levie and Box: Thinking Outside Of It". Huffingtonpost.com. 2012-01-10. Retrieved 2012-04-07. 
  11. ^ Matt Rosoff (2011-10-11). "Box.net Just Scored $81 Million - Here's What They'll Spend It On". Business Insider. Retrieved 2012-04-07. 
  12. ^ a b Hardy, Quentin (24 March 2014). "Box, a Cloud Storage Firm, Plans I.P.O.". The New York Times. Retrieved 26 March 2014. 
  13. ^ "Microsoft "not even relevant," says Box CEO Aaron Levie". VentureBeat. 2011-11-30. Retrieved 2012-04-07. 
  14. ^ "Cloud storage provider Box.net spurns $500M offer (exclusive)". VentureBeat. 2011-09-15. Retrieved 2012-04-07. 
  15. ^ Wilhelm, Alex (19 June 2014). "Box Said To Move Forward With Its Debut As Tech IPO Market Perks Up". TechCrunch. Retrieved 6 July 2014. 
  16. ^ "US Cloud Storage Player Box Come To The UK". Tech Radar. 21 June 2012. Retrieved 20 December 2012. 
  17. ^ "A Visit With Box.net's Aaron Levie at His New Office (Video) - Arik Hesseldahl - Enterprise". AllThingsD. 2012-03-06. Retrieved 2012-04-07. 
  18. ^ "Aaron Levie of Box on This Week in Startups #224 | ThisWeekIn". Thisweekin.com. Retrieved 2012-04-07. 
  19. ^ Aaron Levie (2011-12-02). "VatorNews - Aaron Levie on Box's competitive edge". Vator.tv. Retrieved 2012-04-07. 
  20. ^ Kym McNicholas (2011-05-08). "Why Box.net's CEO Aaron Levie's The Next David Copperfield". Forbes. Retrieved 2012-04-07. 
  21. ^ "30 Most Influential Under 30 CEOs of 2010". Under 30 CEO. 11 January 2011. Retrieved 23 August 2012. 
  22. ^ "Top 30 Entrepreneurs Under 30 - Aaron Levie and Dylan Smith, Box.net". Inc.com. 2008. Retrieved 2012-04-07. 
  23. ^ "40 Under 40: Aaron Levie". San Jose Biz Journal. 1 December 2011. Retrieved 20 December 2012.