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Meet Howard Reisman of Stock Rover in Braintree

Today we’d like to introduce you to Howard Reisman.

Howard, please share your story with us. How did you get to where you are today?
I started out as a software engineer writing business software, both financial and operational. Over time, I transitioned to writing software to manage the performance and reliability of large data centers. That came about because the business software we developed proved to be successful and was running in our growing data center 24 x 7. There was now so much equipment that I started to worry about things going wrong on the hardware and/or the software side. At the time there was a lack of good tools to monitor the performance and reliability of data centers, and there were no tools to alert us when things went wrong. So we designed and wrote our own set of tools. The tools proved to be effective and we started selling them to other organizations that had similar issues with their data centers. Designing and developing data center management software has been the bulk of my professional career.

Besides software engineering, I am also very interested in investing, and around 2008 with web usage exploding, I noticed there was a lack of good software to evaluate and compare stocks and companies across a lot of different factors. For example comparing financial performance, price performance and/or operational performance. So using the same playbook as in my early data center days, I along with Andrew Martin, a very talented software engineer I worked with, decided to create our own custom tool for researching and evaluating stocks and hence Stock Rover was born.

Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
Smooth road? Definitely not. Lots of ups and downs, fortunately mostly ups. Technology is always changing and the rate of change is accelerating. New competitors crop up all the time. Expertise that you have worked hard to learn and use becomes obsolete as the industry constantly embraces new technologies. So that is the basic backdrop for bumps in the road and the ensuing struggles.

I’ll mention two specific struggles, one from my data center days and one more current from my Stock Rover days.

In my data center days, our products ran on Digital Equipment Corp (DEC) computers. One key struggle we faced is when DEC went from being a supporter (listing and reselling our software) to a competitor by developing products that competed directly with us. We had to offer software a whole lot better than the manufacturer to survive. So that was a big long term challenge for us and one we were fortunately able to navigate successfully.

For Stock Rover, the biggest challenge has been providing more and more power in the product, while retaining its simplicity and ease of use. The original goal was to target individual investors with Stock Rover and we have a lot of individual investors using the product. However we were surprised by the appeal of the product to professional and institutional investors. So the challenge now is adding the power and capability that our most sophisticated investors want, but retain the simplicity and ease of use that is a hallmark of the product. It makes for a lot of interesting design discussions.

Please tell us about Stock Rover.
Our mission is to empower investors of all levels to make better investment decisions by offering a comprehensive, accessible, and affordable stock research platform. We believe investors can and should be in complete control of their own investing process, from start to finish.

What we are known for and what sets us apart is the comprehensiveness of the data, the ease of comparison of different investment opportunities and the power of our user interface. What I am most proud of is that the capability we deliver is done with a user interface design that is both extremely fast and very intuitive to use. You can do investment research extremely rapidly and efficiently with Stock Rover. I used to hate stock research. Now I look forward to it.

Do you look back particularly fondly on any memories from childhood?
My father taking me to a Celtics game against the 76’ers and him standing next to Wilt Chamberlain during halftime when Wilt was near the sideline. I think my father (who was around 5′ 7″) made it to somewhere between his waist and rib cage.


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