An entrepreneur and venture capitalist with more than 20 years of executive experience in technology, healthcare and telecommunications, Don Basile currently serves as an investor at a Stealth Mode Mobile Startup, as well as an investor in several other promising initiatives. Raised just outside of New York City, Don moved upstate to study engineering at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, where he graduated first in his class. After years as a data networking engineer at Bell Labs, Don relocated to Silicon Valley and enrolled in graduate school at Stanford. Following receipt of an MS and PhD in electrical engineering, Don began the next phase of his career in private equity and business development as a vice president of Lenfest Capital, through which he pursued acquisitions for cable provider, Lenfest Media Group. During this period, Don assumed responsibilities as president of Lenfest subsidiary CAM Systems.
From Lenfest, Don spent time as director of operations and partnerships at RemarQ Communities (part of Giganews) and senior director at Netfish before taking a role as a managing director and vice president of venture capital business Raza Foundries. For the next four years, Don oversaw investments in broadband communications for Raza, including Lambda OpticalSystems and IntruVert Networks (eventually acquired by McAfee). He later went on to consult on IT acquisitions at Oak Investment Partners.
In 2006, Don became vice president of UnitedHealth Group, the largest health carrier nationwide. While there, he also served as chairman of the board of hardware developer Fusion-io (now a subsidiary of SanDisk). Two years into his tenure at UnitedHealth, Don left to accept a position as CEO of Fusion-io, where he successfully closed the company’s $19 million Series A funding round in 2009. Shortly thereafter, Don joined Violin Memory as CEO and quickly grew the company into a powerhouse of the data storage industry.
Under Don’s leadership, Violin Memory went from a $0 valuation to closing a Series A round of $10 million in just one year, followed by two additional rounds that raised $75 million. By the time of its Series D in 2012, Violin was valued at $800 million and Don would take the company public on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE: VMEM) the following year. Violin remains one of the leading developers of array-based, solid-state memory to this day.
At present, Don pursues technology opportunities, specifically through a Stealth Mode Mobile Startup, which is a mobile API based cloud infrastructure company providing geo-location relevant content and capabilities as part of the “Lego” global silicon valley.
‘Black Mirror,’ the Twilight Zone-esque series in its third season on Netflix, features suspenseful one-off episodes that examine the darker side of modern technology.
One example of the “Netflix model” being reimagined applies to WayUp, a startup that wants to make job-searching more like browsing for a new comedy series than slowly dying inside.