Open source industry veteran Matt Asay joins Canonical as chief operating officer

Canonical Ltd., the commercial sponsor of Ubuntu, announced today that open source industry veteran Matt Asay has joined the company as chief operating officer (COO) — responsible for aligning strategic goals and operational activities, the optimization of day-to-day operations, and leadership of Canonical marketing and back-office functions.

Most recently VP, Business Development for Alfresco, Asay has been involved with open source since 1998, and is one of the industry's leading open source business strategists.

“As more companies and people are embracing Ubuntu for their day-to-day computing, we felt it critical to bring in a person who knew not just open source, but has a long experience in making Linux relevant to businesses and users alike,” said Jane Silber, current COO and upcoming CEO, Canonical. “We think Matt brings to Canonical the perfect blend of industry, executive and community savvy.”

Prior to joining Alfresco, Asay was one of the founding members of Novell's Linux Business Office in 2002 and was an early influencer and participant in the company's shift to open source. In 2003 he founded the Open Source Business Conference, the industry's premier open source strategy event, and has served as an Entrepreneur-in-Residence for Thomas Weisel Venture Partners, focusing on open source investment opportunities.

Before Novell, Asay was General Manager at Lineo, an embedded Linux software start-up, where he ran Lineo's Residential Gateway business. He is an emeritus board member of the Open Source Initiative (OSI).

Asay earned his Juris Doctorate degree at Stanford Law School, spending two of his three years studying software licensing and innovation, and specifically the GNU General Public License, under Professor Larry Lessig. He also holds Masters and Bachelors degrees from the University of Kent (Canterbury, UK) and Brigham Young University, respectively. Asay writes C/NET's open source blog, The Open Road.

About Canonical

Canonical provides engineering, online and professional services to Ubuntu partners and customers worldwide. As the company behind the Ubuntu project, Canonical is committed to the production and support of Ubuntu – an ever-popular and fast-growing open-source operating system. It aims to ensure that Ubuntu is available to every organisation and individual on servers, desktops, laptops and netbooks.

Canonical partners with computer hardware manufacturers to certify Ubuntu, provides migration, deployment, support and training services to businesses, and offers online services direct to end users. Canonical also builds and maintains collaborative, open-source development tools to ensure that organisations and individuals can participate fully in innovations within the open-source community. For more information, please visit www.canonical.com.