…and retire to a safe distance? It’s getting kinda crowded in the enterprise-friendly content sharing / collaboration space right now. Seems you can’t move for announcements, what with Box’s new features and impending IPO, an outbreak of Project Harmony from Dropbox for Business, Microsoft’s trip to the deed poll with OneDrive (née SkyDrive), Intralinks’ market share, and now… fireworks at the Heron Tower in London last week as Egnyte threw a party to tell the world about its own plans.
Not a London office yet (they’re still scouting for locations), but certainly its manager (former EMC Vice President of Sales for EMEA, Mark Rattley) has been hired to drive the company’s anticipated European expansion as Vice President and General Manager for Egnyte Europe. By the end of the year we’re promised the capital will boast a 25-strong sales and marketing team for the region, to complement the 25 designers and engineers in Poland—with headcount growing to 100 over the next five years. Europe already represents 15% of Egnyte’s global revenues in 2013, and expected to be up to 20% this year; Rattley’s task is to grow that significantly, through both direct and expanding channel sales (with a lot of partners represented on the night).
Every file sharing vendor has a story with their own angle. Egnyte’s is firmly focused on giving its enterprise customers a hybrid model that facilitates secure access from anywhere, any device to files which may be off in the cloud or may just as likely have remained on-premise (whether that’s because the file’s just too darn big to be throwing around, or too darn sensitive to leave the building). European customers with data sovereignty concerns can elect to take advantage of Egnyte’s Amsterdam data centre, if a US cloud would have been a step too far.
Egnyte’s customers were rubbing shoulders with partners, execs and media last week and they seemed happy with the company delivering what it says on the tin. However, whether that’s enough to keep them at the enterprise table when other famous names are after the same pie remains to be seen—but their approach at least recognises a certain cloud-pragmatism, in a ‘it’s your data; you know it best; we’ll help you share it wherever you choose to keep it’ sort of way (rather than assuming ‘cloud is best’). There was talk in the room from channel partners also about US vendor assumptions of ubiquitous high-speed connectivity, where the European story may be one of thinner pipes and patchier mobile coverage—a world where online-only access to a far-flung data centre (compared with a line into the local filestore) might bring unacceptable latencies. Egnyte’s pragmatism speaks to those concerns too.
So, one to watch—which is something we’re doing at MWD. Look out for our On the Radar report on the vendor and its offerings, coming soon.