Deaver Brown - Founder

A man with glasses and white hair sitting at a desk.

Following several decades of management and executive experience, Deaver Brown matriculated at Harvard College. Majoring in history, he graduated from Magna Cum Laude and set his sights on graduate school. Deaver Brown continued at Harvard, entering the Business School with a focus on marketing and business. In 1968, he attained his MBA. Entering the workforce, Deaver Brown accepted a position in product management at General Foods. He oversaw the Cool Whip, Awake, and Birds Eye Vegetables products, which contributed to increases in the company's overall sales.

Armed with education and hands-on experience, Deaver Brown then founded Cross River, maker of the Umbroller stroller, as co-CEO with his co-founder Alexandre Goodwin. Shortly after launching the company, Deaver Brown premiered the nation's first stick folding stroller, propelling Cross River to the number one market share in both Canada and the U.S., among other countries. Cross River was sold to Rubbermaid, now Rubbermaid Newell. In 1977, he founded Deaver Brown & Associates, a consulting and sales firm. As President, he worked closely with Petersen Baby Products to spin off various physical and real estate properties, preparing the company for sale to Cosco, Inc. Deaver Brown was instrumental in landing Ames, Hills, Toys "R" Us, Zayre, TJ Maxx, and Caldor accounts for Cosco, as well as participating in their LBO from Walter Kidde and later the sale of the company to Dorel of Montreal, Canada.

In 1982, Deaver Brown joined the 3 co-founders of American Power Conversion (APCC-NASDAQ) as the first VP of Sales; they assisted in getting the venture capital investment to assist the company in making the transition from solar inverters into UPS's power protection devices for the emerging PC business. APCC went on to ride the growth of the PC market as the leader in that market due to the brilliant engineers from MIT and Lincoln Labs who created the best products at the lowest prices in the marketplace. APCC became one of the most successful companies in the 1990s after its IPO in 1988. It was later sold for over $6 billion, with no secondary stock offering required to get there, other than for current shareholders to liquidate some of their shares in an orderly manner. While consulting for his company, Deaver Brown was welcomed as the Vice President of Sales and Marketing at American Power Conversion. As the first to hold that position at APC, Deaver Brown found himself charged with numerous responsibilities: he wrote a business plan and raised money for the company, played a pivotal role in transitioning from solar inverters to internal uninterruptible power supplies (UPS); and he installed a specific beep sound effect in machines to alert the users to conditions such as low power.

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