Yext: The newest $1 billion tech company

Confide makes the internet less permanent

Like most fresh Yorkers, Howard Lerman talks quickly in addition to dresses in black.

The 37-year-old is actually CEO of Yext, which just had one of the biggest public debuts ever for a startup born within the Big Apple.

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Yext (YEXT) stock began trading on the fresh York Stock Exchange Thursday, surging 22%. The company is actually at This particular point worth over $1 billion.

“I’m an East Coast guy,” Lerman told sy88pgw.

Lerman grew up in northern Virginia, just as AOL was exploding on the scene. He went to Duke University in addition to just couldn’t see himself in Silicon Valley.

“When you’re starting a company, you need to rely on people around you to work for free for a long time,” Lerman says. He met Yext’s chief operating officer, Tom Dixon, in middle school. He still remembers the day Dixon brought a Pentium chip to class. the item was the beginning of a long friendship, fused that has a common love of tech.

“They were scary bright kids,” remembers Vern Williams, their math teacher at Longfellow Middle School in Falls Church, Virginia. “They didn’t like routine or textbooks. They wanted to push their creative juices.”

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Yext is actually one of 5 companies Lerman has founded so far. the item’s basically a 21st Century design of the phone book (Yext actually stands for “next Yellow pages.”)

Companies like McDonald’s (MCD), one of Yext’s clients, need the addresses, hours in addition to contact info for its many restaurants up to date on sites as diverse as Google Maps, Yelp, Facebook, Bing, etc. Yext provides the software for companies to update their information on all of those sites with one click.

“We’re pioneering a fresh market,” Lerman, who co-founded the company in 2006, says.

yet for all its success, the company still isn’t profitable. Like many young tech companies, there’s still a lot of risk about how much Yext will grow within the coming years in addition to whether the item will be able to generate bigger sales.

Yext has over 0 employees with offices within the U.S. in addition to Europe. Lerman speaks German in addition to is actually currently learning Chinese, perhaps foreshadowing Yext’s next move.

“I think being an entrepreneur is actually the intersection of two things: Being able to see how the entire world should be in addition to then doing something about the item,” he says. “A lot of people can do one of those two things.”

Related: Silicon Valley kicks off fight on net neutrality

howard lerman yext nyse bell
Howard Lerman, center within the black suit, celebrates as Yext debuts on the fresh York Stock Exchange.

Lerman has been compared to iconic tech CEOs like Marc Benioff of Salesforce for his ability to rally crowds, in addition to Apple cofounder Steve Jobs for his love of black turtlenecks, which he wears every day.

In addition to Yext, Lerman also created the secret messaging app Confide. the item’s gotten a lot of media attention lately after news broke of which White House staffers were using the item to chat confidentially with each additional, in addition to journalists. Confide markets itself as a secure app “military-grade end-to-end encryption,” although some have questioned whether of which’s a fair statement.

sy88pgw (fresh York) First published April 13, 2017: 5:49 PM ET

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Yext: The newest $1 billion tech company

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