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Guide to the John P. Imlay papers
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Collection Overview
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The John P. Imlay papers consist of materials reflecting changes in the software industry during the 1970s and 1980s, specifically within the software company Imlay led from 1971 through 1989, Management Science America, Inc. (MSA). This collection shows the progression of a small business based in Atlanta, Georgia, growing into an international corporation valued at $333 million when it was sold in 1989. The collection also shows how MSA’s software products changed during its lifetime, initially developing software made for mainframe computers and then shifting its products’ design toward performing on personal computers (PCs) in the late 1980s. Included in the collection are correspondence, publications, business records, legal documents, and conference proceedings reflecting the life of Imlay and his company, MSA, which merged with McCormack & Dodge to form Dun & Bradstreet Software Services (D&B Software) in 1989.
John P. Imlay Jr. was born in Jacksonville, Florida on August 26, 1936. He attended college at Georgia Tech in Atlanta and received a BA in industrial management in 1959. After graduation Imlay worked for several companies, including Univac and Honeywell. In 1971 Imlay was appointed chief executive officer of Management Science America, Inc. (MSA), a major software company. Imlay was tasked with bringing the company out of bankruptcy. Under his leadership, MSA jettisoned the company’s more than one dozen business lines, retaining only the software business, and grew from $2 million in revenue in 1970 to $280 million in 1989 when the company was purchased by The Dun & Bradstreet Corp. Imlay set aside a small percentage of his profits from the sale of MSA – about $4 million — to invest in startups. Over the next two decades Imlay Investments Inc. provided venture funds to more than 120 small technology companies. In 1996 Imlay retired after serving as chairman of Dun & Bradstreet Software, the company formed with the merger of MSA and McCormack & Dodge. In 2010 Imlay retired from angel investing. He died March 26, 2015.
7.67 Linear feet
The Computer History Museum (CHM) can only claim physical ownership of the collection. Users are responsible for satisfying any claims of the copyright holder. Requests for copying and permission to publish, quote, or reproduce any portion of the Computer History Museum’s collection must be obtained jointly from both the copyright holder (if applicable) and the Computer History Museum.
The collection is open for research.