Phil Jackson

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Phil Jackson


London / Maidenhead, UK
Tel: 07772 809 487


Strong technologist favouring a CTO or technical VP position. Passionate about technology, building and leading great teams, and producing scalable and correct systems.

Two companies founded, Qwerly (CTO), a social media marketing company (acquired by FlipTop) and ApiAxle (CTO/sole founder) which provides an open source API proxy and related tools/services (acquired by Exicon in 2014).

Many years of management experience from time at McAfee, Skimlinks, Qwerly and ApiAxle. Recruitment played a big part in each role, honing skills for finding the right people to create excellent teams. Well versed in agile techniques.

Generally a back-end developer but with good front-end skills. Expertise in several languages including Coffeescript, Javascript, Python, Ruby and Perl. Extensive knowlege of web markup languages and post-processors such as HTML, CSS, Haml, Jade, Less etc. Hoping to get some production experience of Clojure/Clojurescript if possible.

Technology skills

Node.js - Javascript/Coffeescript
Express, Passport, Jade, Ejs, etc.
Tornado, etc.
Front End
Javascript, Coffeescript, Backbone.js, React, Flux, etc.
Compojure, Ring, etc.
Rails, EventMachine, Sinatra, etc.
Catalyst, TT, etc.
Git, Make, NPM, Unix shells, nginx, varnish, AWS, Redis, Mysql, PostgresQL, Linux, etc.

Work experience


CTO / Founding member
April 2015 – Present London, United Kingdom

Betconnect is a peer-to-peer gaming company that allows high-stake gamers, who lack access to liquidity, to 'shard' a bet amongst other users in Betconnect's network. These users will in return gain access to the 'tip' provided by the high-stake gamer.

Betconnect is built from the ground up on AWS utilising RDS, EC2, ACS and Docker with automated builds originating from CircleCI. Software-wise, the API was written in Clojure and associated technologies, with a 'thin' front-end which was Javascript, ReactJS and Webpack based. Tests were a mandated part of the system and coverage is excellent.

Duties were many and varied, with most time spent 'hands-on' writing code and building out the platform. Building and managing a small team of developers constituted much of the role along with maintaining the balance between ongoing rigorous process and developer motivation.


CEO / Founder
January 2013 – April 2015 London, United Kingdom

ApiAxle is an opensource, lightweight API management solution that handles all the boring stuff and let's you focus on your product. ApiAxle was aquired by Exicon in early 2014.

ApiAxle enjoyed rapid growth and was often touted as the goto solution for open, on-premise API management. The project grew - almost completely organically - from tens of downloads a month to more than 500 at time of writing. ApiAxle currently powers several high traffic commercial APIs.

Though the intent was to hire a co-founder, as a sole-founder the following tasks fell to hand:

  • Development/design of
  • Devleopment/architecture of the ApiAxle product suite (proxy, api, etc).
  • Marketing/blog posts/partnerships/branding.
  • OSS community management.
  • Stakeholder management.
  • Customer aquisition.

Yipgo (side project, ongoing)

Founder / developer / etc

Yipgo is a versatile, text-based system to keep track of everything in your life. At its heart its a TODO list, at least, it should serve the same purpose as a TODO list. The difference is that the list is plain text and has a very basic language that lets the user add meta data around an item in their list.

All back-end & front-end code (coffeescript, javascript, html, css) and design implemented by this author. Frameworks used are Express and Backbone.


Team lead (Freelancer)
December 2011 – February 2013 (1 year 3 months) London, United Kingdom

Tech/team lead of the API and data teams. Several products managed within team including customer facing reporting and management APIs which together were multi-million calls-a-day systems.

At peak managing 20 developers within an agile environment. Liased with several product mangers to help drive strategy for Skimlinks' systems. Strategy discussions with C-level staff were regular and an important part of this position.


CTO / Founder
March 2011 – December 2011 (10 months) London, United Kingdom

Lead a small development team in the design and implementation the Qwerly API, front-end and back-end technologies. Contribution to the competitive stratgey was a core component of this role.

  • Implementation of algorithms to access, clean, consolidate and store public data from hundreds of millions of profiles across over 125 social networks.
  • Over 2,500 developers on the API.
  • Stakeholder management.
  • Management of a large MongoDb database cluster with very high throughput.
  • API receiving tens of millions of reads a day.
  • Core application written in Ruby. Several sub-projects based on Node.js and Coffeescript.


Software Engineer (Freelancer)
October 2007 – March 2011 (3 years 6 months) London, United Kingdom

Part of a ten strong team working on the iPlayer meta data API. The API was conceived as a very fast, denormalised API which would be used dynamically, primarily by the iPlayer interface itself. This meant scaling the system to many billions of calls a month which brought about sharding various database systems and implementing detailed montitoring systems to ensure performance and availability.

Lead of the performance team which involved keeping the API fast enough for use with, amongst others, iPlayer.

Products written in 'modern Perl' with MySql at the back-end. Frameworks used included Catalyst and DBIx::Class.


Software Engineer (Freelancer)
April 2007 – October 2007 (7 months) Ailesbury, United Kingdom

Part of small team of engineers maintaining and developing the McAfee anti-spam lab, collecting and analysing spam and phishing data, and developing backend systems to auto-generate anti-spam rules for the McAfee anti-spam and anti-phishing engine.

  • Wide range of programming languages used. C++, perl, unix shell and Python.
  • Very agile environment. Often spam would be tackled and code pushed to customers within the hour.


Software Engineer
September 2004 – September 2006 (2 years 1 month) Slough, United Kingdom

Developer on a busy six man team maintaining and developing O2's i-mode (mobile internet) platform. Responsibilities included writing tools to further enhance the service NEC supply to O2 and development of ad-hoc scripts used by both NEC's local team and O2 themselves.

Lead developer on KPI (key performance indicators) project that allowed NEC to reliably gather information about various aspects of the platform such as performance and availability. This project was implemented in Perl and C with a CGI front-end, it processes several gigabites of informationb on a daily basis.


Software Engineer
June 2003 – September 2004 (1 year 4 months) Blackpool, United Kingdom

Part of a large team maintaining and developing a large Sun clustered Sybase ASE database. Responsible for the development and of the operational tools which run on a Linux / Apache / mod_perl / TT platform with a Sybase back-end. Security, cost and scalability were a major factor in the choice of platforms and methods of implementation for this product.

Strove to automate many of the processes that were performed manually and prone to human error.


University of Teesside - Bachelor of Science, Computer Studies (hons)
1999 - 2003


Max Niederhofer
CEO, Qwerly

Phil is both a great engineer as well as a great engineering lead (CTO/VP Eng level). In our work together, he has consistently exceeded expectations, delivering quality product on time and on budget. He is diligent, punctual, thoughtful, cognizant of both user experience and performance constraints and always at the cutting edge of computer science knowledge. I'd recommend Phil whole-heartedly for whatever venture he embarks on next.

Dan Chiao
VP Eng, Fliptop

Phil built an amazing application in Qwerly and did an above-and-beyond thorough job helping us integrate it into Fliptop's infrastructure. I would most definitely work with him again.

David Wright
Head of Publishing Services, Future Media, BBC

Phil is a first class engineer. He writes great code, quickly, and is always looking at ways to improve or refactor whatever he works on. I worked with him over several years at the BBC and he made a huge contribution to the success of iPlayer. He's a pleasure to work with.

Nicole Clement-Reynier
Project Manager, iPlayer, BBC

Phil was part of a team of developers I worked with on a daily basis. His helpful insight, dedication, high standard of output and sense of humour made working with him a real pleasure. He has that rare combination of a creative, technical mind and the sense and ability to communicate with people from all aspects of the business.

John Sargent
Software Architect, McAfee

Phil is a very skilled perl developer, producing elegant solutions in a timely manner and consistently showed the inovation, insight and leadership of thought needed the high pressure Spam lab environment.

Terry Wong
CTO, Exicon

Phil is that rare mix of talented, experienced engineer and customer-oriented businessman that entrepreneurs seek out when plotting world domination. He is careful to outline what can be done, delivers consistent high-quality results, and is willing to take the right steps to seize opportunities.