November Recap: Tom Simon

Triangle Marketing Club was fortunate enough to host BBQ buff, Tom Simon for our November meeting. Tom told his story of building Source3 from the ground up and then selling it to Facebook. He compares this experience to building an airplane while falling to the ground.

Kicking things off, we gave a Kanata Lamb’s wool Blanket away to one member of our audience thanks to our sponsor, SpringBoard Promotions. Additionally, we would like to thank all of our sponsors and shout out our two newest sponsors, and Marshall Multimedia.


Tom began by explaining:


  1. starting a company, one always has to change things along the way
  2. things never go quite as planned
  3. the journey is completely unorthodox
  4. and described the process the best he could without stepping on any of the new disclosure statements Facebook has obligated him to uphold


In the beginning, Tom’s mission was to create a one-stop enterprise licensing and rights management platform for distribution of 3D content. He knew he was on to something but convincing and getting investors on board was a challenge. He said, however, it only takes one “yes” and after 57 “no’s” -the 58th investor was all it took. He explained that after this “yes” it was also an “oh shit” moment because now he and his team had to accomplish what they had promised. Reaching what Tom describes as “the pivot” is what lead Facebook to Source3. “The pivot” was the development of Source3 recognition technology along with Source3 reference database. His recognition technology cut out the need for 3rd party IPs when checking the existing licensed property, which apparently was interesting to his friends at Facebook.


Needless to say, after years of hard work and mountains of legal paperwork when going back and forth with Facebook’s lawyers all he had to show for his momentous journey was a short thank you from Facebook. Though, more than a little anticlimactic, Tom stressed


  1. embracing the pivot
  2. not to worry about why your peers don’t get it
  3. believing in your people, process, and technology
  4. and to have fun

Tom said he would absolutely do it all again and he is proud to have many of his people continue on with their careers from Source3 to the major leagues at Facebook.


For more background on Tom please read our interview with Tom here.


Don’t miss out other incredible stories in the future by being sure to attend our holiday party Dec 12th.