Andrew Filev, a geek from St. Petersburg, sells his company for $2.25 billion in Silicon Valley

Citrix Systems announced today an agreement to acquire Wrike, a leader in SaaS collaborative work management, for $2.25 billion in cash. Still subject to regulatory approvals, the transaction is expected to close in the first half of this year.

“The transaction unites leading workspace delivery platform with best-in-class SaaS work management solution, ushering in new era of employee productivity. This combination will accelerate Citrix’s business model transformation strategy and enhance overall future growth expectations,” Citrix stated.

In 2018, Vista Equity Partners acquired a majority stake in Wrike for an undisclosed amount.

Last year, Wrike generated more than $140 million in unaudited SaaS ARR, with a CAGR in SaaS ARR exceeding 30% over the prior two years. The company is expected to “generate between $180 million and $190 million in SaaS ARR in 2021, with the opportunity to accelerate growth over time under Citrix’s ownership,” according to company statements. 

A geek from St. Petersburg

Wrike was founded in California in 2006 by Andrew Filev (in Russian: Andrey Filyov), a graduate from the St. Petersburg State University and the Stockholm School of Economics. Filev was reported to be one of the first people in Russia to gain Microsoft Architect Certification, which identifies top industry experts in IT architecture.

“I moved to Silicon Valley very simply,” the Russian geek recalled later in media interview: ” I took a small travel bag, put on shorts, put my credit card in my pocket — and full speed ahead! The most valuable thing I had was a laptop and a bunch of ideas in my head.”

“There have always been many genius inventors in Russia, but in Silicon Valley there is the mechanism to materialize an idea and deliver a product to millions of consumers fast enough,” Filev added.

In addition to Wrike, Filev also founded Murano Software, а Californian that specializes in assembling and managing dedicated IT development teams. He is also involved in, Appulate and other companies in advisory positions. 

Top international exits for Russian-founded tech companies

The Wrike deal is a new example of a huge international exit for a Russian-founded tech company. Other recent cases include:

Also noteworthy are the NASDAQ IPOs of HH.RU, Russia’s online recruitment leader, in May 2019, and of Ozon, a Russian e-commerce major, which brought in $1.2 billion in November 2020.

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Andrew Filev
Andrew Filev