Patrick Krause, founder and president of IT Convergence, has succeeded where others have failed. Despite a shaky economy, his 14-year-old California-based company has cemented itself as a leader in global markets, such as Argentina, Brazil, Mexico, India, and China. The enterprise is also on the verge of unsurpassed success in the near future. Specifically, company executives have goals to increase the company’s international footprint through the continuous growth of its crucial remote support-services department. Profile recently sat down with Krause to discuss his personal and professional keys to success.
Tell us how you ended up where you are today.
Krause: After graduating from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, I was working for an offshore consulting company. I was approached by a business executive in Singapore who was willing to invest in some of our ideas. I loved that he was not scared off by the idea of establishing a global business. Most people told me it was impossible to start global. From the very beginning, I have always had a passion to start a company and work within a global market, within a dynamic industry that I have always felt is quite exciting.
You founded IT Convergence in 1998. What was the business culture in the beginning?
Krause: We started out with 15 employees. We inherited a training office that was located in the Philippines, so that definitely helped in terms of getting the business up and running quickly. I remember that we only had one goal: to stick around and see how quickly we could become a $100 million company.
That’s quite an aspiration. Why were you so confident that this new company would succeed?
Krause: This industry relies on the ability to communicate consistently and constantly and, through our recruiting process, I was confident we could attract the right people to get the job done. We essentially have six different companies under one roof, so making sure our front office was as skilled as our back office was of vital importance.
Tell me more about IT Convergence’s footprint.
Krause: Basically, we are a global enterprise application services provider with core competencies in oracle consulting, development, education, hosting, and support services. We can effectively streamline the process of implementing, upgrading, or customizing an application, and effectively manage the oracle application’s life cycle.
How do you ensure that you maintain such a skillful workforce?
Krause: From the start, we have focused on having an in-house, and quite organic, sales model. We teach our staff from the ground up about our business and, in order to attract the right people, we offer highly competitive salaries. As we’ve matured as a company, we’ve focused less on hiring new graduates and began hiring industry veterans. So far, it’s working perfectly.
What do the next five years hold for your company?
Krause: We have beaten the odds from the very start, and I don’t see that ending any time soon. Our guiding goal is to continue on with our $100 million growth rate into the next three years. I hope to expand our hosting-managing services and continue to grow globally. I would love to reach a 500-person team while continuing to attract the right people, who are usually the kind who work to support themselves and live to work. People who can thrive an average of 60 hours a week and live out of a suitcase are who I want on my team.
Interesting. Where do you find time to have a personal life?
Krause: (Laughs) As long as I’m staying active, I’m happy. Playing with my kids, paragliding, hiking, traveling—my worst punishment is sitting still.