Peter Currie (businessman)

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Peter L. S. Currie
Born1956 (age 65–66)
Alma materWilliams BA Econ/French
Stanford MBA 1982
OccupationCurrie Capital,

Peter L. S. Currie (born 1956) is a business executive who was the chief financial officer for Netscape from 1995 to 1999.[2][3] Currie has been described by Wall Street Journal reporter Jessica Vascellaro as one of the "Silicon Valley wise men".[4] He was among the advisors to Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg about business matters in 2009.[5] He is an investor in Internet start-ups and serves on the boards of numerous firms.[6] He is president of Currie Capital and was a charter trustee of Phillips Academy;[1] from July 2012 to June 2020, he served as the president of the school's board of trustees.[7][8][9]

Early years[edit]

Currie graduated from Phillips Academy in Andover in 1974[1] and earned a B.A. degree from Williams College in 1978 and an M.B.A. degree from Stanford University.[1] He worked in various capacities at Morgan Stanley including holding the title of Principal from 1982 to 1989.[1] He held various management positions at McCaw Cellular from 1989 to 1995 before joining Netscape.[1]

Netscape rise and fall[edit]

Netscape was a key player that "fueled the Internet revolution," according to a report in "The New York Times," and Currie was an executive vice president who worked under its CEO James L. Barksdale and founder Marc Andreessen.[10][11] Netscape developed the Secure Sockets Layer Protocol or SSL for securing online communication which is still widely used as well as JavaScript. Currie became its chief financial officer in 1995 [1] when the company went public.[12] He was Chief Administrative Officer at Netscape from July 1997 until March 1999.[1] In addition to financial management, Currie was responsible for human resources, information technology, facilities, and operations departments.[1]

Currie owned at least 37,500 shares of stock in Netscape which he sold in 1996, according to one report.[13] Netscape was valued at $5 billion in November 1995.[14] In 1999, Netscape was bought by America Online and became a holding company.[1]

Netscape was seen as the first Internet superstar which had a meteoric rise but the firm was undone by numerous forces including well-established software firms such as Microsoft. In a conference in 2005, Currie described how "hectic and crazy things were" during the tumultuous years in the mid 1990s.[15] Currie looked back to the tumultuous Netscape days and commented:

The failure rate was highest for the start-ups that were Internet bets on a business model. Others, with a large technology component, have often found a way for the technology and the company to go forward.
— Peter Currie in 2003.[16]

Other ventures[edit]

In 1999, Currie and Barksdale and others formed a venture capital firm called Barksdale Group to invest in business start-ups, and raised at least $180 million according to one report.[17] As an investor and consultant, he focused on the enterprise software sector of the business.[1] Currie invested in an Internet start-up called Flipboard in 2010.[6] Currie claims affiliations with Corsair Communications, Critical Path, Inkling,, Kodak Imaging Network, Kontiki, IPVALUE Management, Oracle America, Tellme Networks, Zantaz,, Clearwire, CNET, Safeco, and Palamon Capital Partners.[1] He serves on the board of directors for oilfield services giant Schlumberger.[18][19] In 2016, Twitter released Currie from its board.[20]

Currie's advice was sought by Facebook co-founder and chief executive officer Mark Zuckerberg in 2010.[4]


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l Executive profile (2010). "Currie Capital LLC". Bloomberg Businessweek. Retrieved 2010-10-14. Mr. Peter L. S. Currie is the President at Currie Capital LLC. ...
  2. ^ Michelle Quinn (June 24, 1995). "Netscape Will Go Public With Stock Sale in August". San Francisco Chronicle. Retrieved 2010-10-14. The company filed a statement with the Securities and Exchange Commission yesterday for the initial public offering of 3.5 million shares, said Peter Currie, Netscape's chief financial officer.
  3. ^ New York Times (April 29, 1999). "Microsoft Lawyer Suggests Netscape-AOL Conspiracy". San Francisco Chronicle. Retrieved 2010-10-14. In an attempt to suggest a plot between the two companies and the government to keep their intentions from Microsoft's legal team, the lawyer, Michael Lacovara, questioned Peter Currie, a senior vice president for Netscape...
  4. ^ a b JESSICA E. VASCELLARO (March 3, 2010). "Facebook CEO in No Rush To 'Friend' Wall Street". Wall Street Journal. Retrieved 2010-10-14. Mindful, though, of the inevitability of an IPO, Mr. Zuckerberg has consulted with several Silicon Valley wise men. Over lunches and milkshakes with people like former Netscape CFO Peter Currie, Mr. Zuckerberg has gobbled up advice, entering thoughts into what he calls "the list" on his BlackBerry—a long to-do list of items for the future.
  5. ^ "Yu, Zuckerberg and the Facebook fallout". Reuters. Apr 1, 2009. Archived from the original on April 3, 2009. Retrieved 2010-10-14. In a back-to-the-future move, former Netscape CFO Peter Currie will be the key adviser to Facebook about financial matters,
  6. ^ a b "IPad App Flipboard Gives VCs 10.5M Reasons To Love It". Wall Street Journal. July 22, 2010. Retrieved 2010-10-14. The company said today it raised $10.5 million in Series A financing co-led by Index Ventures and Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, along with individual investors including ... Peter Currie, Quincy Smith and Ashton Kutcher.
  7. ^ Phillipian Staff (February 10, 2011). "Trustees Convene For Weekend Deliberations". The Philippian. Retrieved 2011-02-21. CXXXIV no. 1 ... Peter Currie ’74 will replace Oscar Tang ’56 as Phillips Academy’s 28th President of the Board of Trustees in July 2012 after being elected this past weekend.
  8. ^ "Currie '74 Elected to Succeed Tang as Board President July 2012". Phillips Academy. 15 February 2011. Archived from the original on 16 March 2013. Retrieved 29 July 2012.
  9. ^ "New members join Andover Board of Trustees". Phillips Academy. 19 July 2012. Archived from the original on 29 October 2013. Retrieved 29 July 2012.
  10. ^ Chronicle Staff Report (July 23, 1997). "Tandem Beats, Netscape Meets Street Estimates". San Francisco Chronicle. Retrieved 2010-10-14. Netscape CEO Jim Barkesdale said he has formed an executive committee consisting of himself; co-founder Mark Andreessen, executive vice president of products, Executive Vice President of Sales Mike Homer and Chief Financial Officer Peter Currie.
  11. ^ STEVE LOHR (November 10, 1997). "Defying a Juggernaut; Netscape Maneuvers for Position in a Microsoft-Ruled World". The New York Times. Retrieved 2010-10-14. ... Microsoft depresses our stock price because we're perceived as being in its cross hairs, explained Peter Currie, an executive vice president for Netscape. ...
  12. ^ Michelle Quinn (August 15, 1995). "ON TECHNOLOGY -- Netscape Suffers Market Madness". San Francisco Chronicle. Retrieved 2010-10-14. CALLER: Could I talk to Mr. Stanley please? FINANCE: Peter Currie's office. Can I help you? CALLER: Is he the bean counter? FINANCE: Peter Currie is our CFO. Is there something I can help you with? CALLER: What does that stand for? FINANCE: CFO stands for chief financial officer....
  13. ^ "Officials to Sell Netscape Stock". The New York Times. Associated Press. March 1, 1996. Retrieved 2010-10-14. The other executives announcing their intention to sell include Peter Currie, chief financial officer, with 37,500 shares,
  14. ^ HERB GREENBERG (November 29, 1995). "BUSINESS INSIDER -- How Do You Spell Powerful Bull Market? N-E-T-S-C-A-P-E / Also, Novato High takes lead again in stock contest". San Francisco Chronicle. Retrieved 2010-10-14. ... giving it a market value of more than $5 billion. ... How are Netscape executives reacting to the stock? Not much.
  15. ^ Alan T. Saracevic (October 23, 2005). "Silicon Valley: It's where brains meet bucks". San Francisco Chronicle. Retrieved 2010-10-14. Some of the best stuff at the conference came during a session ... Peter Currie ... Both guys were real candid about how hectic and crazy things were back at Netscape, and Homer especially pointed out that the company was undone by a variety of factors, internal and external.
  16. ^ STEVE LOHR (October 26, 2003). "As Silicon Valley Reboots, the Geeks Take Charge". The New York Times. Retrieved 2010-10-14. The failure rate was highest for the start-ups...
  17. ^ Chris Gaither and Alan Krauss (January 9, 2002). "Barksdale Closes Venture Fund". The New York Times. Retrieved 2010-10-14. The Barksdale Group, a venture-capital firm formed in 1999 by former executives of Netscape Communications, ... the firm raised $180 million and invested about two-thirds of it in 17 start-ups, ... Peter Currie will become a partner at General Atlantic...
  18. ^ "SCHLUMBERGER N.V. - DEF 14A". Retrieved 2020-04-02.
  19. ^ Alster, Norm (2017-01-13). "Rebuilding Infrastructure May Be Profitable for the Very Rich". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2020-04-02.
  20. ^ "DEF 14A". Retrieved 2020-04-02.