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CA co-founder Russell Artzt launches digital startup

Russell Artzt, co-founder of Computer Associates, launched Digital

Russell Artzt, co-founder of Computer Associates, launched Digital Associates, a software startup, a month after leaving CA. He is seen here on March 30, 2016. Credit: Heather Walsh

Russell Artzt, who helped draw the technology road map of CA Technologies for almost four decades, has launched a seven-person cloud software startup in Smithtown.

Artzt, 69, stepped down as vice chairman of CA, formerly known as Computer Associates, on Sept. 30 and launched Digital Associates the following month.

“I feel like I’m getting started again,” said Artzt, who co-founded CA, now based in Manhattan, with Charles Wang, the company’s former chief executive and former majority owner of the New York Islanders. “My passion for the software industry is very strong.”

In a telephone interview, Artzt said that he never entertained the notion of a retirement spent on the beach or golf course.

“That gets old fast,” he said. “I have a lot of ideas. I want to make use of my prior background.”

Artzt co-founded Digital Associates with another veteran of CA, Vincent Re.

They plan to roll out a series of software programs designed to help companies inventory and manage widely dispersed digital assets, such as websites and domain names on computers and mobile devices, Artzt said.

“We’re building products that discover everything about a company’s digital market,” Artzt said, including trademarks and the companies’ presence on social networks.

Artzt explained that Fortune 500 companies and their subsidiaries may have 10,000 websites, and a media company like Disney could have even more.

“We crawl all your Web pages, brand names, product names,” he said, noting that companies also can get insight about their competitors’ digital assets.

He said the company will sell its products online initially, but is considering distributing through a sales force or consultancies such as McKinsey & Co. The first product is expected to be introduced within a month.

Artzt and Wang led CA on a rapid rise that turned it into one of Long Island’s biggest companies. CA threw Artzt, a 39-year-veteran, a retirement party in August at its Islandia offices, where it continues to have a large presence.

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