Ignition Keyed Into Microsoft

John Connors, CFO and CIO of Microsoft Corp., announced last week that he has agreed to join Bellevue, Wash.-based Ignition Partners as a partner. The 45-year-old should feel quite comfortable in his new digs. He’ll join eight other Microsoft alums, including partners Brad Silverberg, Cameron Myhrvold and Jon Anderson, who, like Connors, served as controller at Microsoft.

Ignition Partner Steve Hooper – who doesn’t have Microsoft listed on his resume – says that the firm doesn’t actively recruit from Microsoft. “It just so happens Microsoft employees are driven, smart, hard working, and they have great values, all qualities we look for.”

The firm recently closed its third fund at $300 million and Hooper says he expects the firm will begin investing from it in a few months, once its current fund is fully invested. No date has been set for when Connors will join Ignition, but Hooper notes his timing is perfect. “It would have been much harder for him to join in the middle of a fund,” Hooper says. “But this way, he’ll help us launch the new fund.”

Connors will become the 10th partner at Ignition. He’s a 15-year veteran of the software industry and has held numerous executive positions at Microsoft. At Ignition, he will focus on investments in the enterprise software and services sector.

Email Alastair.Goldfisher@thomson.com