K2 CEO and co-founder Adriaan Van Wyk is out as the company looks for cloud experience

Former K2 CEO Adriaan Van Wyk (GeekWire Photo / Tom Krazit)

K2 plans to announce Wednesday morning that CEO and co-founder Adriaan Van Wyk has stepped down after 18 years at the business-process software company, GeekWire has learned.

Evan Ellis, who was most recently president and chief operating officer of salesforce-management software vendor Xactly, started Monday as the new CEO of K2, a company representative confirmed. Xactly builds cloud-based tools for helping sales managers track the performance of their employees, and that experience managing cloud-based services appears to have played a factor in K2’s decision to find itself a new CEO.

Van Wyk will remain on the board of the company he founded in South Africa with CTO Olaf Wagner in 1997, and is assisting with the transition. K2, based in Bellevue, makes software that allows other companies to give employees easy-to-use tools for building simple applications to track business processes, like order fulfillment.

If you’re building an enterprise software business in 2017, you do it as a cloud service, but in 1997 that wasn’t exactly an option. K2 launched a revamped product that is available as a cloud service in September, two years after it raised more than $ 100 million to accelerate that transition to the cloud.

The company also made a “small number” of layoffs last week, the representative confirmed, as part of that shift to a cloud product. K2 is currently ranked ninth on the latest edition of the GeekWire 200 list, and the company representative downplayed financial concerns, saying that it just had its largest-ever quarter for bookings.