Mark Weiner is the CEO of Reduxio, founded in 2012. Reduxio is a computer hardware/software company based in Israel and the US that develops and commercializes hybrid flash disk storage/management solutions for the enterprise storage market.¬†
Mark is a veteran of the storage industry, with over 20 years of experience in technical, sales and executive roles. Mark joins Reduxio from Exanet, a Clustered NAS vendor where he served as Chief Executive Officer, growing its sales and leading to its eventual acquisition by Dell.
What is the biggest challenge for your business?
Companies and organisations of all sizes are drowning in a relentless data deluge. Mankind has created more data in the past 18 months than in all of history. It‚Äôs almost impossible to even wrap your head around this statistic. This will only continue to grow as more industries transform to the digital economy.¬† As a result, everyone is struggling to store, manage and protect this ever-growing body of critical business data.¬† Therefore, the biggest challenge for the data storage industry in general, and for Reduxio as well, is to continue to provide innovative, effective solutions that are purpose-built for the latest business processes and media types.
What are the key trends in your industry?
Firstly, lines of business are taking an increasing leadership role in defining their business and application requirements to central and business unit IT groups. As a result, technology has to be simple to use, as everyone has been conditioned by the ease of use and user experience of their iPhones and other well-designed consumer technology products and apps. Enterprise vendors, including those selling into the data centre, must get on board.
Secondly, in an always-on, always-connected digital economy, where instant gratification is no longer a luxury but an expectation, there is intense pressure to move toward zero recovery point objective (RPO) and zero recovery time objective (RTO) for data recovery, from today‚Äôs unacceptable but widely practiced 24 hours-plus RPOs and RTOs, which are the best available from every major legacy vendor today. This is well documented by global market research firm IDC. This includes recovery from the five thousand plus malware and ransomware attacks that penetrate organisations every day in the US alone and that have received increasing visibility, based on the recent devastating attacks on the national health institutions in the UK, Maersk in Denmark, Toyota in Japan and FedEX in the US. If the CIA and NSA can be hacked, then anyone and everyone can, and is. It‚Äôs not a matter of if, but when. Reduxio is helping to pave the way with its unique TimeOS‚Ñ¢ operating system and its truly revolutionary ‚ÄúBackdating‚Ñ¢ capability.
Thirdly, as customers look for simplicity, the storage stack is collapsing, and again Reduxio is helping to pave the way. While many user organisations have made massive investments in a wide range of fragmented sub-optimised data storage solutions, Reduxio is now delivering a unified data storage and management stack, with both primary and secondary storage in one integrated platform, along with built-in data protection. It dramatically reduces both TCO and complexity while delivering huge improvements in user/ administrator productivity.
What have been your key learning experiences so far?
A key learning for us is that, given the huge challenges as I have described, large scale customers are less risk averse than they have ever been in buying from rapidly emerging, innovative companies like Reduxio. Some of our customers include the largest public utility in the US, one of the largest travel ecommerce sites in the world, and major universities like the prestigious Technion Institute in Israel, the University of Georgia and the University of Southern California in the US, the global heavy equipment manufacturer Kuboda, the ramen king, Nissin Foods, maker of the iconic ‚ÄúTop Ramen‚Äù product, and many others.¬† Further, the sense of urgency is so great that we are seeing sales cycles of only 60 days, which is unprecedented in my 25 year career in the data storage industry, with 70% of sales not even requiring a Proof of Concept. This is a clear indication that customers are hungry for solutions that just work, easily and cost-effectively.
What will be the biggest driver of growth going forward?
For Reduxio, we continue to expand our direct sales force and distribution network of preferred, technology-forward value-added resellers. Today, we operate in all major US cities, have offices in London, Paris, Brussels and Amsterdam, and a very strong presence in Israel. We are seeing rapid increases in sales productivity in our sales regions. The next step is to move toward a high-velocity viral model, with easy-to-download freemium visions of key features to expand awareness of our unique capabilities, and to continue to build a global community around Reduxio using open innovation events like Hackathons and other innovation tournaments.
What advice would you offer other growth companies about how they finance their business?
Don‚Äôt get caught up in the Silicon Valley mindset of go big or go home and raise massive amounts of capital at unrealistic valuations. That will only backfire, as it has spectacularly for several of our competitors. Have a ‚ÄúLean Growth‚Äù philosophy. Think cash efficiency. Wait until something is about to ‚Äúbreak‚Äù before you hire an FTE. Focus on a path to profitability from day one. Keep pushing on increasing ASPs and gross margins. Goal your sales force on net contribution. Use cost effective digital and social media marketing & stay away from expensive and time-consuming trade shows that steal time and cash without producing quality leads.¬† Finally take a global perspective when assembling your investor syndicate. We have investors from Israel, Europe and the US ‚Äì amongst which lies Kreos – and we are looking to bring on an investor from Asia next.