We continue the discussions about the Qualys Software-As-A-Service business model, and offer the Extended Enterprise as the new paradigm challenge for software companies to tackle. In fact, if you are a software entrepreneur looking for your next big idea, listen up carefully.
SM: Your partnerships with IBM and Symantec are essentially reseller agreements? PC: Exactly. In the case of IBM we integrate that with their managed security, and we correlate with the data they collect. We are in such a strong position we are able to keep our brand. Between me and Don Dixon, and a few other VCs, we had the guts to put $65M at a time when nobody was investing in anything. The entire market was dry. Just dry. That is why there are so few competitors.
Again, now there is a lot of money in the market, and we are going to see a slew of on-demand software companies which are going to be attacking enterprise problems.
SM: Also in the same vein there are companies like SAP which are putting in their own Salesforce.com. CRM service. PC: The problem for these companies is inherently, like Microsoft today, 40% of their profits are from Office. Office wants to be hosted in the browser and be delivered as a service. They are forgetting the company is not built to host a service.
The enterprise todat has very specific needs, and the needs have changed. It is the Extended Enterprise. You cannot keep the data inside, you have to put it outside and secure the data so you can set the application where you need it and you can control who has the rights to use, alter and edit.
Others cannot do it because they put the data inside the company where only a few people can access.
This is the new extended enterprise; think about the extended enterprise and the problems companies will face. This data is very hard to control, secure, and maintain. Once you move it out, you use the Internet as a distribution medium, and you need to secure the data. Some of the old problems will disappear, and new problems will arise because of this extended enterprise concept.
SM: Yes. Collaboration across the extended enterprise is also a big challenge. Imagine, if you are trying to design a car sitting inside BMW, your dashboard components are probably being done in China, door knobs in Malayasia, … how do you manage secure sharing, often needing to edit design files together … In fact, in the extended enterprise, Security and Collaboration are intertwined problems!