James was formerly the president of the Digital Transformation Platform Group at Microsoft, a product development group spanning Microsoft’s business applications and services. With responsibility for strategic direction, development and delivering results from a broad product group that includes Dynamics 365, Power Platform, Azure AI Platform, Azure Data Platform, Azure IoT Platform, and the Microsoft Cloud for industry-specific solutions, Phillips works deeply on accelerating digital transformation for businesses and enterprises – from the tech stack to customer satisfaction to team management.
As a strategic director, James advises Madrona portfolio companies at the earliest stages of innovation and at later stage as they build to scale.
Prior to joining Microsoft, Phillips was a serial entrepreneur, most recently as a founder and CEO of Akimbi Systems (acquired by VMware) and a co-founder at Couchbase (NASDAQ: BASE). He also held engineering, product management, corporate development and marketing leadership roles at Intel, VMware and Synopsys, and he spent two years as a technology investment banker with UBS PaineWebber. He began his career as a self-taught software developer and co-founded Fifth Generation Systems (acquired by Symantec) at age 17. He is also an angel investor and actively mentors start-up CEOs. He is currently on the board of F5.