(Non-Compete Clauses, and More) At the time we sold the company, both Roberta and I signed a five-year non-compete clause. We agreed to not do anything in the consumer software, or videogame, business for five years.
It’s standard practice when companies are bought. The acquirer paid a lot of money for Sierra, and didn’t want me to wait two weeks, set up a new company, and hire away all the employees.
That said.. the odds are that my non-compete wouldn’t have been binding. The company that bought Sierra confessed shortly after Sierra was acquired that it had been cooking its books (reporting more profit than it actually had). Given this, and the huge negative impact on the ex-sierra employees (ourselves included), I doubt any court would have blamed me for violating the non-compete agreement.
All of which is irrelevant now. The five year period is long gone, and we could compete if we wanted to. Roberta would like to do something again, and I’m starting to think that direction.
Roberta would like to see us start a new company, which we may do someday. I’ve got a few ideas about how the software behind this site can segway into games, but want to get it finished, and successful, on its current track before I start thinking about taking it some new direction.
A couple of weeks ago, I did contact Sierra. I saw an article that indicated they were struggling, so I contacted them to see if there was anything I could do to help.
We’re already off to a bad start though, and it’s my fault. They asked if I could meet with their CEO (last week) in Los Angeles or New York, and I asked if it were possible to just have a conference call. They felt it was critical that our first meeting be face-to-face, and our meeting was deferred until April when I was going to be in LA anyhow. I did nearly thirty years of jumping on planes every few days, and always hated it. Roberta and I still do a fair amount of travel on our own, but it’s at a much more leisurely pace, and we’re together – and I spend my days playing golf, or with my computer – not in meetings. I would love to see Sierra regain its leadership position, and will do what I can to help, but hopefully this won’t include riding planes or showing up for meetings.