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1:1 Shelly Heiden, CEO, VBrick Systems
Streaming industry �pioneer VBrick �Systems is undergoing �a significant overhaul in �2013, doubling its sales �force while revamping �its technology platform to become a hybrid solution �capable of managing video distributed both behind the �corporate firewall and via the public web. Shepherding �this transition is Shelly Heiden, the former executive �vice president of Learning Management Systems (LMS) �provider Plateau Systems, who was named VBrick's CEO �in April. In this interview with Wainhouse Research Senior �Analyst Steve Vonder Haar, Heiden shares her thoughts �on VBrick's prospects and the evolving landscape of the �enterprise streaming market.�
WR: This is your first time working in the enterprise �streaming sector. What opportunities are open to you and �VBrick?�
SH: I think there is amazing opportunity right now. VBrick has been in business for a little �more than 10 years and has seen �incremental growth but nothing �really explosive. I think part of that is because of the timing. I really feel that there is a huge opportunity in the market right now. We're seeing a great pick-up in our pipeline on the corporate side and I think large corporations are starting to adopt video much �more than they have in the past. �
WR: How can the lessons you've learned in your past work at �Plateau Systems in the Learning �Management Systems market �be applied in the enterprise �streaming market?
SH: I think there's a nice parallel between what we saw in the human capital management space and what happened over the last five or six years. It was very stratified, with many vendors in the space, and then went through a big period of consolidation. And I see a lot of the same parallels here where right now there are literally hundreds of vendors in the (streaming) space, and I think it's a good opportunity for someone to break out. Also, what I see coming from the LMS space is that predominantly six or seven years ago everyone was on premise and then we saw a big move to the cloud. And while I don't know that we're going to have a wholesale move to the cloud in this space, I think there is an opportunity for a vendor to provide a hybrid solution.�My management teams have spent their entire careers selling, implementing, and supporting technology within large enterprises. In order to be successful, you need not only the best technology, but also the best services and support teams to enable your customers and partners to get long-term value out of their investment.
WR: Tell us about how you see hybrid streaming solutions evolving and how the hybrid solutions will be more effective in addressing enterprise streaming needs.
SH: First of all, you need to have an architecture that will support an inside-out strategy: both inside the firewall and outside in the cloud, which is exactly what we are releasing over the next few quarters. So, number one, that is important. As we see larger companies adopt video, they all have their large global organizations with offices distributed around the world and people working out of their homes. Because of bandwidth constraints inside their own network, you've got to be able to offer a solution that allows them to access video both within and outside their own network.
WR: In addition to expanding into hybrid solutions, VBrick also is doubling down with a significant expansion of your sales efforts and getting more aggressive in getting out there and telling the VBrick story. Talk a little bit about your sales strategy.
SH: We have a strategy where we have both direct sales and a channel. Both are very important. But I also think it's important to remember that -- particularly when your growth area is on the corporate side or the enterprise side -- most of those large deals are going to be direct or have a lot of direct interaction. So we've actually doubled the size of our field, predominantly in North America but we've also expanded in EMEA as well. That will be superimportant as we go after these larger enterprise deals.
WR: With the changes now taking place in VBrick's product evolution and in your selling approach, how should we measure your success over the next year? What milestones should we be expecting VBrick to hit?
SH: A couple of milestones actually. We have a new architecture and product that we're releasing to the market. Number One we will have our product out there and will have wide adoption and very happy customers. Number Two is growth. Growth is super-important to us right now. Those are the two key areas.
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