From this Monday's Crain's. Where exactly will they relocate do you think?
CCH's Oakleigh Thorne returns, dot.com in tow
Online educator's HQ relocating from Denver
You can go home again: Oakleigh Thorne is proof.
Ten years after turning around his family business, CCH Inc., and selling it for $1.9 billion, the former fixture on the Chicago civic scene is returning from Denver with his latest venture, $89.3-million revenues ECOLLEGE.COM.
An early investor, he became CEO in 2000 as the tech market crashed. With cash dwindling, Barron's named it one of the 100 dot.coms most likely to implode.
Mr. Thorne returned the company to its roots: selling software to colleges and universities to teach students — primarily adults — online.
"The company is maturing, the business model is proving out," says Chris Girgenti, an eCollege director and managing partner at Chicago's New World Ventures. With partner J. B. Pritzker, he persuaded Mr. Thorne to invest $6 million in eCollege back in 1998.
Indeed, eCollege is a leading vendor in a niche growing 25% to 40% this year, says Eduventures Inc., a Boston market research firm. Mr. Thorne expects revenues to grow 25% to 30% for "years to come."
Sweeter still, Forbes recently named eCollege one of the 25 fastest-growing tech companies.