Christopher Gali (MS '94, CIS)

Insurance software pioneer

While still a graduate student Chris Gali got his first software programming assignment, a part-time gig that paid $5 an hour. A decade and a half later, in 2008, Gali and his business partner, Christopher Doggett, sold AdminServer—the insurance industry software firm they had launched 10 years earlier—to Oracle for $125 million.

That transaction confirmed the sense that Gali had about the United States after arriving at Temple from his native city of Chennai, India. “I came from a society where the chances of you getting where you wanted to go were minimal,” says Gali, “It was a great feeling to realize after a few months here that if you work hard you can go far.”

Gali met Doggett while working for a consulting company on-site at AIG’s offices in Wilmington, Delaware. In 1998, they launched AdminServer.  With Doggett handling business matters and Gali writing revolutionary software applications that would move the insurance industry onto the burgeoning Internet, their firm took off. By the time they sold it, they had 400 employees and 17 major insurance and financial clients, including Nationwide, Mutual of New York, ING, Fidelity Investments and Merrill Lynch.

With more time on their hands, the pair ventured into another exciting industry. They opened up a nationally praised Rittenhouse Square speakeasy-style bar, Franklin Mortgage & Investment Company. Gali also joined the board of directors of the Franklin Institute and the Philadelphia Police Foundation, and established an annual $25,000 grant to the CST’s Department of Computer & Information Sciences. After their non-compete agreement had lapsed the partners launched a new Philadelphia-based insurance software company, Adminovate, in January 2012.

“Everyone wanted to get the band back together again,” Gali says.  The chief architect who leads the technical design and management of all of the firm’s software development, Gali has created what he calls the “next generation” insurance software. Compatible with Microsoft, smartphones and cloud-based systems, the firm’s first product is designed for use by insurance business analysts, not just programmers. Among their first clients: Health India TPA, which processes payments for AIG and other insurers.

Says Gali: “I think what we have is not only going to change the insurance industry but I think every financial sector will change because of our new software.”