I’m from the Dutch part of Belgium but live and work in Silicon Valley. At the age of 13, I caught the entrepreneurial bug when I started a weekly magazine while DJ’ing for FM Bruxel - at that time Belgium’s leading (in fact, only) underground radio station. In 10th grade, I got kicked out of catholic school for being a troublemaker and ended up at an international school in Brussels, where I developed my flight-risk tendencies. Not ready to get a job, I moved to the US and got a law degree from Stanford. I never did practice law (the closest I got to the firm life was a summer stint at McKinsey).
After graduation, I stayed in East Palo Alto, a low-income community just a stonesthrow away from wealthy Palo Alto, and, with a fellowship from Echoing Green Foundation started Plugged In, one of the nation’s first digital divide programs. During a visit in 2000, President Clinton honored Plugged In as a model for programs around the world.
I left Plugged In in March of ‘99 to co-found Eazel, an open source Linux desktop start-up that brought together an amazing group of people, including Mike Boich, Andy Hertzfeld, Bud Tribble, Darin Adler, Arlo Rose, Maciej Stachowiak, Brian Croll and Don Melton, to name just a few. Among other projects, I coordinated the creation of the GNOME Foundation. The company didn’t make it, but our software, Nautilus, continues to be used by millions of Linux users, and Eazel alumni went on to build big chunks of the Sidekick, arguably the first smartphone, and Apple’s Safari web browser.
After spending time in Korea (picking up another language and doing biz dev work for a couple of local startups), I found my way back to the Valley and, from the creation of the Mozilla Foundation until the 1.0 launch of Firefox in November, 2004, I headed marketing and business affairs for the Mozilla Foundation. I coordinated Firefox marketing activities, including branding, the Firefox 1.0 launch and the creation of Spread Firefox, the community marketing effort for Firefox. I also headed up partnerships with Google, Yahoo and Amazon that have worked out quite nicely for Mozilla. My work for Mozilla was sponsored by Mitch Kapor’s Open Source Applications Foundation.
After leaving Mozilla, I founded Flock, the web browser that lets you connect with your friends, acquired by Zynga in 2010. Flock was started with the help of a great group of angel investors and advisors including Josh Kopelman, Gil Penchina, Joe Kraus, Scott Kurnit, Stratton Sclavos and others. VC investors include Bessemer Venture Partners, Catamount Ventures and Shasta Ventures. I was Flock’s CEO through its Series C.
After leaving Flock, Rob Theis kindly offered me a desk and other accoutrements at Doll Capital Management, where I was an Entrepreneur In Residence in ‘07.
In January of 2008, together with a founding team including Andrew Lacy, Jessica Kahn and Tim O’Brien, I started Tapulous, building a network of social games around Tap Tap Revenge, the first big App Store hit gaming franchise. I worked at founder and CEO at Tapulous until its acquisition by Disney in July, 2010, and currently am SVP and General Manager for Disney Mobile Games at Disney Interactive. Hit titles built during my time at Disney include Where’s My Water, Cars AppMates, Temple Run: Brave, and Where’s My Perry. In all, I have worked on 17 #1 iPhone hits since the App Store launched in 2008.
I like to keep busy and help community projects that I believe can help bring about big change, so over the years I’ve worked on a number of other projects, including chairing CTCNet, a national network of community technology centers for low-income people and co-founding Full Circle Fund, an effort to engage a new generation of Silicon Valley leaders in tackling the social challenges facing our communities. I’ve also served on the Community Technology Advisory Board for SBC/Pacific Bell and on the board of RISE, an East Palo Alto mentoring program for African American high school students. I enjoy traveling and get annoyed when I don’t speak the local language. Thus, I speak Dutch, French, English, Italian, Spanish, German, Korean and Chinese (in progress).
In May 2009, Fast Company featured me as one of the 100 Most Creative People in Business and one of the 10 Most Creative People in the Music Biz. I officially peaked in June of that year. I’ve also been featured in Advertising Age’s “2010 Creativity 50” (March 2010) and Newsweek’s Silicon “Valley Future Superstars” (April 2010). In May 2010, Fast Company featured me again, as a Blast From The Past.
My brief bio: Bart Decrem is SVP and General Manager for Disney Mobile Games, the group behind the smartphone smash hits Where’s My Water, Temple Run: Brave and Where’s My Perry. Previously, Bart was founder and CEO of Tapulous, one of the first companies in the iPhone space, and makers of Tap Tap Revenge, the most popular music game of all times. Bart also founded Flock (acquired by Zynga), co-founded Eazel, and ran marketing and business affairs for the Firefox 1.0 launch. In between, Bart has been an Entrepreneur In Residence at Doll Capital Management and worked on a number of community projects. Bart was born and raised in Belgium, holds a JD from Stanford Law School. Bart has been featured as one of Fast Company’s 100 Most Creative People in Business (May 2009). in Advertising Age’s “2010 Creativity 50” (March 2010) and Newsweek’s Silicon “Valley Future Superstars” (April 2010).