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Last week in Las Vegas, Egnyte encountered the perfect storm. One of our top NAS partners Synology invited us to join them in their booth along with IoSafe at the 2014 Consumer Electronics Show (CES). At the event, we experienced access to great prospects, new customers, Valued Added Resellers (VARs) and Managed Service Providers (MSPs). CES is viewed as THE venue for the latest and greatest — a showcase for new developments in the industry. It’s one of the biggest trade shows in Vegas and has been running since 1967.

CES 2014 LogoWhy the perfect storm? On par with previous years, CES had multiple keynote and guest appearances, such as Marissa Mayer, John Chambers, Gary Shapiro, and 50 Cent, as well as Michael Bay who made a very awkward exit on opening day — although, far from a meltdown in my opinion.

In addition to all the keynotes and sessions, CES continued to impress on the show floor. Our booth was surrounded by big-name vendors introducing the latest technology, not only for the consumer market but the mid-market to enterprise market as well. No, you did not misread that; I said mid-market to enterprise as well.

The decision to attend this show was not a simple “yes.” We had some concerns: Is this the wrong audience? Will we be inundated by consumers looking to build out their home NAS? Will the consumer attendees at CES really want to learn how we can help with their enterprise file-sharing needs?  Long story short – we made the right decision and were thrilled with the high level of booth activity, interest in learning about Egnyte’s value proposition, meetings with Egnyte customers and the strengthening of our partner relationships.

It was great chatting face-to-face with attendees about their unique business needs, and I noticed a few common themes last week. First, SMBs love their Synology NAS but haven’t thought about cloud enabling it for business. Once they stored their files on the NAS, they were stuck with figuring out how to securely share their business-critical files. With the Synology integration that we announced at the event, they could instantly see the value that both solutions provide to solve their file sharing and storage needs in a way that consumer cloud-only options can’t.

Secondly, we were approached by many MSPs and VARs that wanted to add Egnyte to their line card and offer enterprise file sharing. I spoke with one MSP that specializes in medical IT build-out. He was hesitant to provide cloud recommendations due to HIPAA and other compliance issues but was thrilled to learn about our integration with Synology’s products that are commonly used by his clients. Learning that Egnyte builds on top of existing infrustrure to provide flexibility for sharing files from any device AND adheres to compliance and security needs for businesses was key for him to make the decision to cloud enable his customers with Egnyte.

Working the booth at a trade show and enduring long hours is never easy and is made even more difficult when no one worthwhile comes by or obviously just stops in for the tchotchke. This was NOT the case for us at CES; we had a constant stream of prospects and customers and all were very engaged. We found ourselves passing along numerous hot leads for immediate follow up and a few deals were closed right on the show floor. It’s great to see that once a customer understands the value of Egnyte on a Synology NAS device, that light bulb shines bright. I lost count of how many of these interactions I had at CES, and in the 15+ years I have been in this business, I can tell you last week was one of the best. Hence, CES for Egnyte was “the perfect storm.”

Thanks again to the Synology and IoSafe teams for a successful event, and we look forward to seeing what future collaboration brings.

*Ross Kemp is a director of business development at Egnyte.  He manages our Storage Partner ecosystem and has been in the industry for 20+ years.  When not at work, he loves spending time with his family, checking out vintage cars and making wine. Be sure to follow him on Twitter: @KRossKemp.

 

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