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Thought Leaders in Cloud Computing: Everbridge CEO Jaime Ellertson (Part 4)

Posted on Monday, Mar 28th 2016

Jaime Ellertson: Let me now answer your question on growing areas of our business where we see opportunities. When we think of corporate with information exchange, they spend in the neighbourhood of $5 billion dollars a year on the physical buildings that all their employees are in. The reality is when someone leaves that building or comes in early and it’s dark, there’s no one escorting them to their car.

It could also be kids in college campus. Who protects them when they’re wandering in between the building and it’s dark outside? We’re spending all this money on the physical asset. Isn’t people the most important asset that most businesses have and aren’t they traveling more than ever? We see the idea that security is going to move from physical to the virtual world. Instantly by pressing a button on their mobile phone, either corporate security or family will know that I’m having a problem.

With almost everyone carrying a mobile phone even if it’s not the most sophisticated smartphone, the ability to record the activity around the person, to gain ambient knowledge, and to be able to connect that to someone who can help you be safe is a natural transformation of that physical security market to this virtual distributed market. We see that as a big opportunity.

Another one that we see as huge is telemedicine. Let’s take Zika. It has the potential to create a problem with large populations because aspiring families would have to be sensitive to the number of diseases they can get when they have been infected with the Zika virus. How do you get to these distributed areas in North America or in Latin America to be able to introduce a simple consult where you can package up and send a digital thermometer and a couple of other digital devices to render some sort of long-distance healthcare.

Is that going to be more effective with some of these things in asking people to come in to the hospitals? In the Ebola case, it’s true. When they came back to the country, we had to quarantine people. It would have been much easier to quarantine those individuals through the use of a nurse calling you twice a day and measuring your temperature and asking you a few questions than for you to drive 20 miles to the nearest hospital that could support an Ebola patient.

That’s totally available with today’s technology but connecting those dots in telemedicine and then protecting the patient’s privacy is a challenge. We see lots of opportunities with the democratization of medicine and telemedicine opportunities with the exchange of information.

One of the things we do is the contextualization of information. Through that, we can encrypt and secure it. Whether you’re an executive in London talking to your employees in France after the recent terrorist activities in France, how do you do that securely? You can do that with one of our secure apps that allow you to completely encrypt 256k plus encryption across the airwaves with either text, voice, or even video. Those are big opportunities in related spaces – in the more generic safety areas and the other one is the corporate healthcare connected and secure space.

Sramana Mitra: Are you a venture-funded company or a bootstrapped company? Can you give us a little bit of information about the company?

Jaime Ellertson: The company is a little over 10 years old. Interestingly when you mentioned cloud, we’re actually now the combination of two companies. It’s a cloud company after a business that I led in the mid to late 2000s which is called Gomez. It’s one of the world’s leading Internet application monitoring company. We sold that to a very large company in 2009.

A couple of those principles founded the company called Cloudfloor. Cloudfloor was in the business of basically helping you monitor your cloud instances and spool new instances up and down as your needs dictate it. As you know, engineers tend to like to turn the resources on but they don’t always turn them off, much like a child leaving a room. That actually runs up your cost on the cloud. We were focusing on building that.

One of the companies that I was on the Board of was Everbridge. Our challenge at Everbridge about six years into our history was that initially, our core market was this emergency notification space. Those are large incidents that happen once a month. They were more once-in-a-while big events with a lot of processing. Then the dust settles and there maybe no usage for a month to two months.

We ended up merging the two businesses – Cloudfloor and Everbridge – and rebuilt our entire platform with the ability to expand into the cloud and use those resources to supplement our core data centres in North America and Europe, because when there was a big event, it could affect 50 million people. Messaging 50 million people on five to seven devices is hundreds of millions of communication and information exchanges.

For us, it was a natural to use the cloud to benefit us in both turning on those resources and turning them off. In 2015, we had about 400 employees globally. We’ve reached over 2,700 enterprise clients and we’ve added five new applications from that emergency notification application, so we have six information exchange applications on our core SaaS platform. All of those utilize the cloud heavily.

Sramana Mitra: Thank you for your time.

This segment is part 4 in the series : Thought Leaders in Cloud Computing: Everbridge CEO Jaime Ellertson
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