If work ever drags for Christopher Doggett and Christopher Gali at their year-old software company, Adminovate, whose offices -- programmers, poolroom and all -- are high up the office tower at 1818 Market St., they can head around the corner for late-afternoon daiquiris at one of the bars they own, the speakeasy-themed Franklin Mortgage & Investment Co.
Insurance software made Gali and Doggett rich. They sold their previous company to Oracle Corp. for $125 million. Then they took a break and focused on cocktails and living the good life in Philadelphia's toniest neighborhoods. Now they are back for a software encore.
Doggett, who left college in Ohio to work in computers, and Gali, who moved to Philadelphia from Chennai, India, to attend Temple University, met while working at American International Group's information technology department in Wilmington 20 years ago.
In 1998, Doggett and Gali started their own software firm, AdminServer, building Internet applications for dozens of insurers and hiring more than 200 people before they sold the firm to business software giant Oracle in 2008.
Flush with cash, and bound by an Oracle noncompetition clause that would keep them on the software sidelines for a few years, they started Franklin Mortgage, named for an actual Prohibition-era bootlegging front. They also opened Lemon Hill in the Fairmount section.
By the time Gali and Doggett's noncompete lapsed, they were ready to develop what Doggett calls the "next generation" of insurance-processing software, built on the common C# programming language and compatible with Microsoft, smartphones, and cloud-based systems.