Robert F. Smith is the Founder, Chairman and CEO of Vista Equity Partners. As Vista’s Chairman and CEO, Mr. Smith directs Vista’s investment strategy and decisions, firm governance and investor relations.
Vista currently manages equity capital commitments of over $14 billion and oversees a portfolio of over 20 software companies that employ a combined 22,000 employees worldwide. Since Vista’s founding in 2000, Mr. Smith has overseen over 140 completed transactions by the firm. During that time, Vista has managed capital for hundreds of limited partners, including many prominent public, private and corporate pension plans, endowments, family offices, and high net worth individuals. The firm has consistently performed in the top measures of PE firms. In 2012, Buyouts magazine awarded the firm’s Vista Equity Partners Fund III the Gold Medal as the top-performing 2007-Vintage Buyout Fund in the U.S.
Under Robert Smith’s leadership, Vista has exclusively focused on the enterprise software, data and technology enabled solutions sectors. Mr. Smith currently serves on or participates on all the boards of Vista’s portfolio companies, including Misys, Active Network, and Omnitracs.
Prior to founding Vista, Mr. Smith worked for Goldman Sachs, M&A, from 1994 to 2000, in New York and Silicon Valley. As Co-Head of Enterprise Systems and Storage, he executed and advised on over $50B in merger and acquisition activity with companies such as Apple, Microsoft, Texas Instruments, eBay and Yahoo.
Mr. Smith earned his B.S. in Chemical Engineering from Cornell University and his MBA from Columbia Business School. He is the Principal Inventor on two United States and two European patents.
Mr. Smith’s business achievements and global philanthropic works have received recognition from numerous entities - including the Reginald F. Lewis Achievement Award, the Humanitarian of the Year Award from the Robert Toigo Foundation, the Ripple of Hope Award from the Robert F. Kennedy Center for Justice and Human Rights, the Award of Excellence from the National Association of Investment Companies, and the Columbia University BBSA Distinguished Alumni Award.
Mr. Smith is the Chairman of the Robert F. Kennedy Center for Justice and Human Rights, Member of the Cornell Engineering College Council, and a Trustee of the Boys and Girls Clubs of San Francisco. Mr. Smith is a Board Member of Carnegie Hall. He is also an avid fly fisherman.
B.S. in Chemical Engineering, Cornell University
M.B.A., Concentration in Finance and Marketing, Columbia Business School