When Cosmo DeNicola arrived at Temple University in the 1970s, he was only 10 minutes away from his home in Port Richmond. The young scholar had dreams of playing football, and becoming a physician. Luckily—neither of those things came to fruition for Mr. DeNicola. Little did he know at the time his career would lead to founding 7 businesses, acquiring 10 companies, taking a company public, all while selling 3 to global public entities. “I transitioned to accounting in my sophomore year,” says Mr. DeNicola. “My girlfriend, now wife of 45 years, and I decided to get married, and as a result, I had to have an adult job. I enjoyed accounting, and transferred to the business school—I noticed my GPA going up and my enthusiasm going up, and I really loved my classes.”
Upon graduation, Mr. DeNicola started his own accounting practice, DeNicola & Associates. His associates were his wife, Janet, and his childhood friend, now director of finance, Joseph Fares. “Being at Temple helped give me an appreciation of both racial and cultural diversity,” says Mr. DeNicola. “I went to a small elementary school, an all-boys high school, and both were comprised of a singular community.” Before the software industry took off, Mr. DeNicola found himself developing systems on paper at work, inspired by his tech contemporaries, Bill Gates and Steve Jobs. He eventually had his systems programmed to manage a packaging company—the idea that led him to start Amtech Software, which 37 years later is the market leader with 60% of U.S. manufacturing facilities using their systems. After the recession of 1990-91, Mr. DeNicola was concerned that his company might become bankrupt. He went to a lawyer who taught him one of the most important lessons of his life. “He said, ‘Cosmo, you’re not bankrupt, you just need to do a better job of managing your business,’” says Mr. DeNicola. “The life lesson was you learn from the hard times, and then you’re prepared to deal with them because you understand what to do to succeed in the face of adversity.” For Mr. DeNicola, the software industry has changed immensely, as ideas quickly evolve to innovation. As an entrepreneurial leader in the field, Cosmo understands what companies and industries need, and how to build and deliver it. “You need to have imagination and be fearless,” advises Mr. DeNicola. From his modest early days in the technology industry, his companies are leaders in enterprise mobility, telemedicine, electronic medical records, chronic disease management and analytics. His other businesses and interests include the Philadelphia Soul Arena Football Team, Steinberg NFL Sports Agency, MKS&D Hollywood Talent Management and Chicken Soup for the Soul Publishing and Entertainment. His business accomplishments have been recognized by his high school Hall of Fame Committee. Ernst and Young recently awarded Cosmo the Philadelphia region 2018 Entrepreneur of the Year award for his group of Family Businesses. He has also been inducted into the City All Starts Pennsylvania Sports Hall of Fame. His philanthropic efforts have him focused on his three passions: World Health, Cultural Diplomacy, and Humanitarian Recognition. Having come full circle, he delivered the commencement speech at Temple University in 2012. “Temple and the Fox School of business created a platform of accomplishments and fulfillment,” stated Cosmo. “The fun has just begun.” Additional details about Cosmo are available at www.cosmodenicola.com.
Temple University Degree
Bachelor of Business Administration ’76, Fox School of Business
Title & Company
Owner and Chairman, Cosmo DeNicola Companies
Temple University Awards & Affiliatons
- Commencement Speaker, 2012
- Juror, Temple Hackathon, 2017
What I wanted to be when I was 20 years old
A doctor and an NFL player
Best piece of advice anyone ever gave me
Be fearless; you’re young enough to go bankrupt three times and still be a billionaire.