< PrevNext > Robert Smith, Vista Equity Partners founder & CEO The Strong & Silent Type By Elizabeth West / December 20, 2016 / Contact Reporter Share The industry never saw a quote attributed to Vista Equity Partners CEO Robert Smith regarding his private equity firm's acquisition of Cvent. When the U.S. Department of Justice, delayed the acquisition with "second request" for more in-depth details, and later wanted an additional extension, Smith rebuffed them. Quiet and tough is standard operating procedure for this investment giant, personally worth $2.5 billion, according to Forbes. He studiously stays out of the spotlight but drives home the deals.Smith's defiant silence toward the DOJ forced regulators either to sue to block the merger they had already delayed once or to clear it before the end of November. It was a game of chicken that Smith ultimately won. The DOJ cleared the merger on Nov. 22, allowing Smith to add meetings technology provider Cvent to a Vista Equity Partners portfolio that already included Lanyon, Cvent's largest competitor. On Nov. 29, Vista announced the merger of Lanyon and Cvent, coming together under the Cvent name.If Vista's buying spree is any indication, Smith has a larger strategy in play for his meetings and event technologies. Vista snapped up marketing automation platform Marketo in June. The move positioned Vista Equity to deliver end-to-end meetings data automation to the market under its single umbrella. This is a first for the meetings industry and promises to streamline the effort to capture and analyze engagement data from live meetings and events.Yet Smith's cascading mergers have brought not just opportunity but also anxiety to the meetings market. Cvent CEO Reggie Aggarwal has assured clients that all the Lanyon and Cvent products will be supported for the near future. Meanwhile, competitors and meetings technology observers have said there's little question whether platform redundancies ultimately will integrate into a single product. That's an outcome both Lanyon and Cvent clients will have to navigate eventually.