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Greg Pierson

Retired CEO (Fraud Management, Authentication, Internet Security)

About me

Greg Pierson, a serial entrepreneur hailing from the vibrant city of Portland, Oregon, is a remarkable individual who embodies the qualities of leadership, innovation, and unwavering determination. His contributions to the world of technology have been truly groundbreaking, particularly in the realm of device-based reputation systems, where he has played a pivotal role in revolutionizing their application in online fraud management and consumer authentication.

Humble Beginnings

His journey began in the heart of North Portland, where he was raised by his loving parents alongside his younger brother. When he was eight years old, his family embarked on a new chapter, relocating to a modest home in Northeast Portland, which would serve as his parents' residence for over four decades. It was within this nurturing environment that his parents instilled in him the values of hard work and dedication. His father, a facilities manager, and his mother, an English teacher, not only provided for their family but also cultivated a deep love for language and learning in Greg.

A Love Story Spanning Three Decades

High school sweethearts, he and his wife have embarked on a remarkable 35-year-long journey together. Their partnership has borne the fruits of a loving family, with their eldest daughter currently pursuing higher education and their youngest son navigating the challenges of high school. He attributes much of his success to the unwavering support of his lifelong partner, emphasizing that he couldn't have achieved his remarkable feats without her by his side.

Venturing into Business: Laying the Foundations

His foray into the world of business commenced during his tenure as a consultant with Accenture, where he showcased an extraordinary ability to unravel complex business problems. His expertise was instrumental in bringing about positive change within distinguished organizations such as Nordstrom, Bridgestone Firestone, and Land's End. He led teams in the implementation of large-scale business systems and associated process changes, leaving an indelible mark on these organizations.

Pioneering Innovations

Greg Pierson's journey is marked by a relentless spirit of innovation. Over the years, he has co-authored and received multiple patents in fields ranging from fraud management to end-user authentication and secure transaction processing.

Building Prosperous Enterprises: A Testament to Vision and Teamwork

While he excels in problem-solving, his true gift lies in his ability to assemble formidable teams capable of transforming vision into reality. His companies' success stories are a testament to this skill. As co-founder and CEO, he transformed mere sketches on the back of a napkin into rapidly growing, profitable, high-margin global businesses, each with hundreds of employees. Despite the distinct nature of the services offered by these companies, they all shared exceptional teams, strong cultures, and exceedingly satisfied customers. What set these ventures apart was the unique approach of granting equity to every team member, resulting in successful exits exceeding $650 million for both companies.

Awards and Accolades

While he has been recognized as an Entrepreneur of the Year Finalist by Ernst and Young for his role in driving growth, innovation, and community involvement, he takes even greater pride in the awards earned by his teams. His last company received numerous accolades from industry and professional organizations, including distinctions such as the InfoSecurity Products Guide: Fraud Prevention Winner, IDnext: Identity Innovation Winner, and Fortress Cyber Security: Authentication & Identity Winner.

iovation and TransUnion

In 2018, he led innovation as CEO for a remarkable fourteen years. At that juncture, iovation was a global leader, with 35,000 brands relying on its device-based intelligence for authentication and fraud management. iovation screened billions of transactions daily and prevented over 500,000 fraud attempts, cementing its status as an industry powerhouse.

In June of 2018, the story took an exciting turn as TransUnion acquired iovation. This union held the promise of merging device and identity-based consumer intelligence, creating innovative services to enhance consumer experiences and security. The success of iovation was largely attributed to its people and culture, with employees displaying remarkable loyalty. His continued support during the transition and his eventual departure at the close of 2020 marked a significant chapter in his entrepreneurial journey.

Coaching and Advising

With over two decades of CEO experience under his belt, Pierson has shifted his focus towards mentoring other CEOs, offering advisory services, and investing in startups. Whether it's supporting large organizations, private equity firms, government agencies, or startups, his common thread is a passion for internet services and big data analytics. he derives immense satisfaction from connecting with ambitious individuals tackling complex challenges, infusing them with the same energy and determination that propelled his own companies to success. Some of his notable personal investments include ChemDirect, Qlash, and OpenContext.

Racing and Adventure: A Shared Passion with His Son

A significant portion of his time is now devoted to nurturing his son's racing career. In 2020, his 16-year-old son secured a spot with a world-class team to race a 200mph prototype race car in the FIA World Endurance Championship. This thrilling journey across continents has deepened his love for travel, blending the joy of witnessing his son's growth with the excitement of exploring new places, cuisines, and cultures.

Aligned With Noble Causes

He is not only a successful entrepreneur but also a philanthropist with a deep sense of gratitude. He actively supports organizations like Self Enhancement, Inc., which empowers young adults facing challenging circumstances. In addition to direct giving, he has provided college scholarships to at-risk youth in his community and remains accessible for speaking engagements, mentoring, and any form of support he can offer.

The Future

While Greg Pierson currently enjoys a semi-retired lifestyle, there's a glint in his eye and a subtle 'for now' in his demeanor, hinting that there may be more on the horizon. It might only be a matter of time until the perfect opportunity arises. He remains open to the possibility of leading another venture in the future, with a long queue of investors and colleagues eagerly awaiting the chance to collaborate with him once more. For now, he finds contentment in coaching and advising, savoring the fruits of his labor, and relishing the chance to explore the world with his family. His journey serves as an inspiring testament to persistence and is deserving of both admiration and emulation.