more lightning within the us


Lightning Tools is delighted to announce its presence in Houston, Texas, USA!

We have more demand in the US than in any other country for our SharePoint tools and web parts. We have therefore decided to expand Lightning Tools and grow our organization on both sides of the pond.

Julia Ito (formerly from Idera) has joined Lightning Tools as Chief Executive Officer and will be assisting Nick and myself with the large task of growing Lightning Tools predominantly within the United States. She is already joined by Phillip McMillan in the Houston area who will be responsible for sales both directly and through resellers in the South East region of the United States.

Chris Ryan, newly appointed Director of Sales from Baltimore, Maryland but now based in Paris, France will be seeking to expand Lightning Tools worldwide and has already developed a great partnership in Australia.

This leaves Nick and I to do what we enjoy the most! Nick is now free to concentrate all of his efforts on guiding the development team on building more exceptional products and helping to support our customer base worldwide. I’ll be responsible for backing the sales team with technical demonstrations, marketing and evangelism both in Europe and the US.

Find out more from Julia, Chris and Phillip below:

Julia Ito, CEO of Lightning Tools is responsible for defining, executing and maintaining Lightning Tools overall strategy. Prior to joining Lightning Tools, as a Director of SharePoint products for Idera, Julia successfully launched, introduced and positioned the entire SharePoint product line. As a veteran of the software industry with over 18 years of experience, Julia has helped several software companies  to launch product lines that were very successful, including NetIQ corporation, Mission Critical Software and XDB Systems.

Julia holds a Computer Engineering, B.A. in Economics and MBA in Business Administrations from Rice University.

Chris Ryan has been working with start-ups in the Microsoft ecosystem since the 1990s developing direct and indirect sales to Global 5000 organizations around the world.  Previous successful start-ups have included XDB Systems, Mission Critical Software (IPO’d and later merged with NetIQ) and most recently with AVIcode, which is now part of the Systems Center Operations Manager product from Microsoft.  At AVIcode, Chris sold the largest single project in the history of the company, developed the largest overall account and established partnerships with the most financially productive distribution and consulting partners.  Chris also developed and managed Microsoft relationships in Europe at AVIcode to help address customer requirements for .NET, SharePoint and BizTalk implementations.

Outside of work Chris is an avid traveler and has visited over 50 countries across seven continents including a 12 month around the world backpacking trip with his wife Joelle.  In his spare time he enjoys cycling and cooking whatever is fresh and in season.

Phillip McMillan is an experienced sales executive with a passion for computer technologies.

Prior to Lightning Tools, Phillip was Director of Business Development at Travelintro – a new media start up focused on the travel industry.  His four years with Travelintro allowed him to expand his skills into computer technologies including web development and video production.

After university Phillip started his career with the Hearst Corporation, a leading top 20 US media company.  While working at their largest property, The Houston Chronicle, Phillip held several senior sales positions before moving into management and attaining the level of Advertising Sales Manager.

With our customers at the forefront of our minds, we will be continuing our efforts to build on the foundations of providing excellent tools and customer service.