CA Technologies co-founder Russell Artzt has joined Melville software company RingLead Inc. as executive chairman, head of product development and an equity investor.
And RingLead is moving jobs to Long Island that are now based in Belarus, Ukraine and Israel, Artzt said.
Artzt, 70, said Digital Associates, his Smithtown startup launched in October 2015, will be folded into RingLead, whose software cleans and verifies sales contact data used by companies and enhances it with information from social media and other sources. He said three or four employees of the five-person Digital Associates startup are likely to make the transition.
Speaking Friday after a Long Island Capital Alliance program in Melville, where he served as a panelist, Artzt said about half of RingLead’s 35-person workforce resides abroad.
“I want to get it to 80 percent on Long Island,” he said. “For RingLead, Long Island is strategic.”
In joining RingLead, Artzt reunites with the company’s chief executive, Christopher Hickey, who was a sales and marketing executive at CA.
CA Technologies, formerly known as Computer Associates International Inc., moved to Manhattan in 2014 but retains some staff at its former headquarters in Islandia. Artzt co-founded CA with Charles Wang, the company’s former chief executive and former majority owner of the New York Islanders.
Hickey said that RingLead opened its Melville headquarters in December and plans to fill 50 jobs there in the next 12 months.
“We’re shutting down every other operation except Milwaukee,” he said. “We’re bringing it all to Long Island. We’re not going near the West Coast. The talent is here.”
Artzt, said that sending jobs offshore can mean lower salaries, but also lower productivity. He recounted opening a CA unit with 1,000 people in Hyderabad, India.
“The [return on investment] was not great,” he said. “I’m going to create jobs right here on Long Island, right here on Route 110.”
Artzt said the 14-year-old company would seek to move some of its foreign-based employees to Long Island and find domestic replacements for other jobs.
He said the process of getting an H-1B visas to move overseas workers with specialized skills to the United States is uncertain.
“It’s so difficult to get people here,” Artzt said. “You have to a 25 percent chance of getting them here.”
Hickey said that the company is hiring for a variety of positions, including software developers and designers.
He said that all employees who get positive reviews will have the opportunity to get performance-based stock options.
“Every single person will get an equity stake of what we build,” he said. “When we win, they win.”