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Techaisle Blog

Insightful research, flexible data, and deep analysis by a global SMB IT Market Research and Industry Analyst organization dedicated to tracking the Future of SMBs and Channels.

Strong Need for SMB Cloud Channel Partners to offer Vertical Solutions

Techaisle’s SMB Channel Partner Trend study shows that there has been a big leap in percentage of SMB channel partners offering cloud computing services to SMBs in the last year across several countries. For example, in the US the percentage offering cloud services has jumped from 38 percent in 2012 to 64 percent in 2013 and another 22 percent are planning to offer cloud solutions. Similarly, in Australia the percentage has gone up substantially from 34 percent in 2012 and in Germany from less than 30 percent to over 60 percent. The biggest change is seen among the VARs. In 2012 only 34 percent were offering cloud solutions and in 2013 74 percent of them are offering cloud solutions to SMB customers. In Germany, the biggest jump has been within the SPs (Service Providers). However, not all channel partners (VARs, SPs, MSPs, SIs) have become successful in selling cloud to SMBs. Techaisle’s Winning Strategies of Successful SMB Cloud Channel Partners study finds that there are quantitative, meaningful and actionable differences between channel partners who are successful in the business of selling cloud and those that have not developed successful cloud practices.

Industry expertise and the ability to offer vertical solution is one such key area that is creating a distance between the successful and unsuccessful SMB cloud channel partners. Techaisle’s SMB studies have shown that SMBs are increasingly looking for vertical industry solutions but channels have been relatively slow in offering such solutions. Year 2014 will be important as this is the first year when SMB business issues have flip-flopped from reducing operational costs to increasing business growth and cloud-based line of business vertical solutions is an important area of investment.

Combining the data from Techaisle's SMB and Channel Partner studies we find that a significant gap exists between percent of SMBs adopting vertical cloud solutions and percent of SMB channel partners offering such solutions though it must be said that the gap has narrowed in the last 2 years as shown in the chart below.

techaisle-smb-cloud-vertical-solutions-blog-3

The Winning Strategies of Successful SMB Cloud Channel Partners study data shows (chart below) that 21 times as many successful cloud partners are offer vertical solutions to SMBs as those that are not successful.

techaisle-smb-cloud-vertical-solutions-blog-2

Most of the successful SMB cloud channel partners have product/service portfolios that are mapped to the full set of SMB technology needs: compute and storage infrastructure, applications, communications, support for test/development, and solutions addressing specific vertical requirements. The majority of unsuccessful SMB channel partners have limited their offerings to storage, backup, and basic SaaS offerings like Office 365 or Google Apps.

Some may argue that there is a ‘chicken and egg’ effect: that successful partners have broader portfolios because they have more engaged SMB customers. As with the chickens and eggs themselves, though, it may not matter where the cycle begins, if SMB channel partners that are not currently successful in the cloud wish to compete with those that are, they will need to develop portfolios that extend beyond IaaS to vertical-specific applications.

techaisle-smb-cloud-vertical-solutions-blog

Above chart from the Winning Strategies study shows that 50 percent more successful cloud channel partners than unsuccessful partners report that vertical industry knowledge is a key component of the value that they bring to their SMB customers. These successful channel partners are able to demonstrate knowledge of the SMBs’ industry, and are therefore able to create confidence within their SMB clients. These channel partners are also the most likely to build and maintain long-term relationships with their SMB customers. Unsuccessful channel partners claim that they are able to demonstrate understanding of their SMB customers’ business needs – but at a technical level – and are constrained by a lack of vertical understanding. 70 percent of unsuccessful channel partners emphasize their technical expertise during interactions with SMBs as they lack the understanding of their SMB customers’ industry vertical to be able to offer sophisticated cloud solutions. They emphasize service quality without necessarily understanding what this means in a cloud context. In addition, many of the unsuccessful partners tend to stress price when positioning cloud computing solutions.

Therefore it is imperative for SMB channel partners to go beyond technical knowledge and really understand the dynamics of industries in which their SMB customers operate and become industry subject matter experts.

Techaisle’s Winning Strategies of Successful SMB Cloud Channel Partners study covers critical differences between the activities and approaches of successful and unsuccessful cloud partners in three key areas: Business Priorities and Resource Allocations, Current and Planned Cloud offerings, Sales and Marketing Strategies and Tactics

Techaisle’s SMB Channel Partner Trend report covers: Mobility, Cloud, Managed Services, Virtualization, Backup, Data Integration, Sales & Marketing including Social Media & Lead Generation

 

 
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Brand Equity - A New Prescription for Cisco’s SMB Channel Partner Success

Cisco and the SMB market

Cisco has established an undisputed leadership position in the enterprise market. The company combines a widely-adopted and well-integrated portfolio of networking products with a highly-skilled (and paid) direct sales force to manage/expand its presence within major accounts.

The SMB market is a separate challenge. Here, buyers are less likely to require integration across multiple network components and more likely to emphasize price. They are also more likely to receive advice/management from channel partners, further reducing Cisco’s control over the acquisition process.

Against this backdrop, Techaisle’s SMB Channel Trends research illustrates the strengths and challenges Cisco must manage, as it looks to expand its share in the SMB segment.

Cisco Commands High Trust and Reputation

Within the channel community, Cisco enjoys a sound reputation and a high degree of trust. Techaisle’s latest SMB channel partner survey shows that 78 percent of Cisco’s SMB channel partners trust Cisco, a higher percentage than is registered by competitors such as HP and IBM. Nearly 70 percent of the partners believe that Cisco has quality products – again, the highest ranking recorded within the ‘hardware leader’ group including Cisco, HP, IBM and others. However, only 52 percent mention that Cisco has cutting edge technology, a percentage lower than that for both IBM and Microsoft. Moreover, 60 percent of Cisco’s SMB channel partners say that they Like Cisco, lower than corresponding rates for HP and Microsoft, only slightly higher than is found for IBM.

In its 2013 Annual report Cisco has written, “A substantial portion of our products and services is sold through our channel partners, and the remainder is sold through direct sales.” With specific reference to SMBs, Cisco wrote, “Generally, we define commercial businesses as companies with fewer than 1,000 employees. The larger, or midmarket, customers within the commercial market are served by a combination of our direct salesforce and our channel partners. These customers typically require the latest advanced technologies that our enterprise customers demand, but with less complexity. Small businesses, or companies with fewer than 100 employees, require information technologies and communication products that are easy to configure, install, and maintain. These smaller companies within the commercial market are primarily served by our channel partners.” Techaisle’s data shows that Cisco has attracted positive attention within this channel partner community, but that its technology and relationships do not leave it especially differentiated from competitors.

Technology Shift has Created SMB Messaging Challenges

In recent years SMB technology demands have shifted to cloud, mobility, analytics, social media, collaboration, managed services and virtualization. Cisco is seeking to capitalize on this market transition through the development of cloud-based product and service offerings that enable its customers develop and deploy their own cloud-based IT solutions.

In communications channel partners in the U.S. including those specializing in the SMB segment – Cisco has been steadily driving them to offer products and services that deploy cloud, mobility, virtualization, managed services and data center solutions. This is by no means an easy task as most SMB channel partners are being actively courted by competitive vendors that also want to grow their emerging technologies’ business. SMB channel partners selling advanced technologies have an average of 3.46 vendor partnerships which average jumps to 4.21 for Cisco SMB partners, a difference of 21 percent. With this increased contention for mind/market/wallet share, it can be difficult for Cisco to manage brand identity and its related messaging.

This difficulty is illustrated by study findings showing that of all the Cisco SMB channel partners, 44 percent consider Cisco to be their top partner. The other 56 percent mention Microsoft, Oracle, HP, IBM and several others. Within the VAR/SI community, Cisco’s share of preference is 48 percent and drops to 39 percent amongst the MSPs/SPs that are viewed as critical to the success of future cloud initiatives.

Cisco’s SMB Channel Partner Brand Equity

Techaisle believes that it is time for a new metric to represent presence (and opportunities for growth) within the SMB market. Techaisle refers to this second-generation measurement approach as Brand Equity Management. It is measured by a robust proprietary index, the Techaisle Brand Equity Score (BES-360).

Techaisle believes that it is important for IT vendors to measure their Brand Equity within SMB channel partners as well as SMBs. Techaisle’s Brand Equity Score, BES-360, helps to identify areas where IT vendors can improve to increase share of wallet. BES-360 is a KPI (Key Performance Indicator) that measures the strength of brand within a segment.

Cisco’s Brand Equity Score within its SMB channel partners is higher than most competitors – but lower than scores for both IBM and Microsoft. The implication of these findings is that even through Cisco has high brand equity amongst its channel partners; it is not necessarily true that its entire SMB-focused channel base is firmly wedded to Cisco’s game plan.

SMB Channel Partner Brand Equity Measurement– the New Prescription

Breaking down the data for Cisco, Techaisle’s study finds that almost 25 percent of Cisco’s channel partners have a Brand Equity rating of 80+. This group forms Cisco’s core partners. The data also shows that almost 35 percent of Cisco’s SMB channel partners have equity of less than 40. These are the partners that Cisco needs to work on.

Interestingly, small business focused channel partners give a higher Brand Equity Score to Cisco than mid-market focused channel partners. This is a segment that Cisco should address as the mid-market has become a battleground for most IT vendors and there is yet no clear dominant player.

Among all SMB channel partners of Cisco, VARs are actually driving up the Brand Equity Score. In fact 41 percent of VARs constitute the HBE (High Brand Equity) group. On the other hand, MSPs constitute only 20 percent. In order for Cisco to continue to grow its CMSP program and build on its initial successes, Cisco has to turn its attention to the MSPs that serve the SMBs to understand the key reasons for lower brand equity which when fixed can lead to better wallet share among MSPs.

Drilling down further into the data, Techaisle finds that Cisco is not doing better within the overall managed services community than it is within MSPs focused on cloud. A higher percentage of Cisco’s HBE partners are offering managed services to SMBs whereas a higher percentage of ABE (Average Brand Equity) partners are offering Cloud to SMBs. Cisco’s SMB cloud ambitions would benefit from moving some of these ABE cloud partners to HBE segment. The HBE segment offering cloud services need extensive training on cloud solutions to become more successful in offering cloud to their SMB customers. More than 40 percent of these channel partners are working with SMB customers that have private cloud. This may be good for Cisco in the short-term but it does not represent best practice in this segment, and it is misaligned with the ongoing acceptance of public cloud as a preferred IT delivery platform.

Product resale revenue is 43 percent for HBE partners as compared to 38 percent for ABE. Similarly, recurring revenue is 57 percent for HBE as compared to 61 percent for ABE. Naturally, this bodes well for Cisco’s current revenue as the High Brand Equity partners are driving higher revenues from products. However, if Cisco plans to increasingly promote service-centric partners then a lot more work is required to identify partners with higher services revenues and move them into the High Brand Equity segment.

Practicing the Prescription

Techaisle’s brand management work is anchored in the belief that if a vendor’s brand equity is good, then it can compete successfully with vendors with lower brand equity for sales of comparable products or services. Vendors with sound products/services but low brand equity will struggle to maintain parity with competitors that have higher brand equity, even if that vendor’s products/services are (somewhat) inferior. Hence, Brand Equity Score findings help indicate potential areas of expansion or exposure as vendors, like Cisco, assess their potential for expanding the footprint of their brands within the SMB channel partner community. The composition of Cisco’s BES across its channel indicates the core strength of its brand. Techaisle’s analysis indicates that Cisco has both strengths to build on and areas requiring focus as it moves to position its next-generation solutions (especially, cloud solutions) through its channel to the SMB market.

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Lessons from a Business Focused CIO of an SMB

Jagdeep RandawaI first met Jag Randhawa at Dell World. It was a meeting organized by Dell Analyst Relations to showcase Dell’s Cloud Business Applications. Unbeknownst to Dell Analyst Relations, we hardly discussed Dell. What struck me immediately was his smiling demeanor and an earnest desire to be a champion of business innovation and his views on what IT could do to spur growth through employee involvement and implementing new technology ideas.

We re-connected, ten months later at his office.

Jag Randhawa is the VP of IT at CAMICO Mutual Insurance Company, an SMB with slightly less than 100 employees. And he is the quintessential CIO who loves his job, his company and his fellow colleagues. He also showers high praise on Dell’s customer intimacy, likes VMware’s virtualization solutions and embraces Open source.

Specifically, he uses Dell for Network, Switches, PCs, Servers, Storage and is purchasing Microsoft Software. From VMWare, he uses their server virtualization technologies and software like VMotion and inventory management software for managing all the VM servers.

Cloud Focus

His is a Dell shop, to the extent that he has replaced all existing storage and security solutions with those from Dell. He and his IT team of twelve do not work with any channel partners. His philosophy – whichever applications that can be pushed to the cloud without compromising security of his customer data, just do it. And he has done it; CAMICO is using 12 cloud applications which are:

    1. SalesForce.com – Sales Management

 

    1. SilverPop – Marketing Automation

 

    1. Nexure – Agency Management Solution

 

    1. Acuity – Legal Partners Expense Management

 

    1. DocuSign – Electronic Signature

 

    1. LearnLive – Webinar Broadcasting and Training

 

    1. ADP/HCM – Payroll and Human Capital Management

 

    1. Skype – IM and Video

 

    1. Paypal and Total Biller Solution – Credit Card Payment Gateways

 

    1. Concur - Travel Expense Management

 

    1. RingCentral – Telephony

 

    1. MailRoute – Email Spam Filter



Business Perspective Focus

To increase employee engagement and help grow the business, he created a Bottom-up Innovation Program at CAMICO, in which employees submit ideas to grow the top-line, increase operational efficiencies, improve customer service, enhance business processes, and reduce cost. This program has generated many valuable ideas, and as a result he is embarking on two of his most ambitious business focused IT projects.

    1. Using Open Source for eCommerce solutions

 

    1. Developing a Big Data Proof of Concept



Both of the projects are still in infancy stage and they are both being developed using Open Source. To explain further on the eCommerce solution initiative, he says, “We currently host our website and members-only extranet using Oracle Portal, and now we are planning to use Drupal for our website and another open source software for extranet, which is yet to be determined. Our website and extranet also have eCommerce capabilities embedded in it, so we will be porting our eCommerce into this new Open Source portal”.

He is most excited about the big data project which is his initiative to provide actionable insights and perspectives for the business management at CAMICO. When I asked him about the key objective of working on a big data project, he said, “We are experimenting with Big Data using many of the Open Source software to analyze and find correlations among loss trends. The first objective is to find loss causes in our current data and subsequently use these findings to better underwrite future risks.”

Employee Engagement Focus

As mentioned earlier, The Bottom-up Innovation Program was his brain child. The program encourages all employees to submit ideas that could add value to customers or the business. Employees observe their environment, listen to customers, and bring their outside experiences as consumers to generate ideas that could benefit the company or customers. These ideas are validated, refined and prioritized by a committee of fellow employees. For every accepted and implemented idea, employees are recognized for their contributions through intrinsic and extrinsic rewards. This program makes employees more an integral part of the company, thereby increasing employee engagement and retention. The program has become such a success that he is invited to speak at several industry events for the benefit of other organizations. He not only speaks about the concept but also explains the implementation mechanics and expected outcomes of the program.

Overcoming business challenges

Similar to most other CIOs, he and his team have a long list of IT initiatives but the top four initiatives for 2014 and beyond are:

    1. Replace Website, Members-Only and eCommerce platform

 

    1. Use Big Data for analyzing current and future risks

 

    1. Move more infrastructure solutions into the cloud

 

    1. Build targeted Mobile solutions



But there are enough challenges that his team (he detests the word “staff”) has to overcome. As per Jag, the biggest challenge for any IT department is money and talent. He elaborates on his statement, “There is never enough money to do everything we want to do. However in my view, if there is a business justification for an expense, money is never an issue. The definition of business justification is, for every dollar spent how much money the new solution is going to make or save? There are times when you cannot find direct or immediate benefits, so you have to find creative ways to show value and sell new ideas. Cloud applications make it easier to try new solutions without heavy upfront commitment”. To qualify, he quickly states that the big data project was unscripted and not budgeted but he was able to create a business value which catapulted it to be among the top four IT initiatives.

Business Focused CIO

He is very clear in his mind that there has never been a better time to be a CIO. And he has a message for other IT leaders, “Technology has become an integral part of the business. IT leaders should always be thinking of how they can leverage technology to create competitive advantage, grow the business and create operational efficiencies.” As if on cue, he recites what he practices:

    1. Partner with business peers. Look for ways to help them achieve their goals faster using technology.

 

    1. There is no IT project; every project is a business initiative. If you want funding for any initiative, figure out how it adds value to the business.

 

    1. Find partners who will help you showcase the value of technology.

 

    1. Above all, build credibility with your peers by providing excellent service.



Way to go.

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Outage Immune, Distributed, Scalable Database-as-a-Service for SMBs from GenieDB

Since the time Amazon announced its Database-as-a-Service, most IT vendors, big and small, have either spun off services utilizing Amazon or built services that are complementary to Amazon. And many others have rolled out competing products. Each of them is targeting SMBs with the promise of agility, reliability, scalability and integration capability. The market has become crowded with options that are very difficult to sift through for SMBs. Nevertheless, the interest in database-as-a-service has never been higher. As per Techaisle’s 2013 SMB Cloud Computing study, between 6% and 64% (varies by employee sizes) of SMBs are either using or planning to use database-as-a service. However with  an average number of formal IT staff at 4.2 and percentage of SMBs having formal IT staff varying from a low of 3% (for 1-4 employee size) to high of 97% (for 500-999 employee size) businesses the adoption is sporadic and hindered because of inherent possibility of “lights-out” situation due to outages, network latency and connectivity issues.

GenieDB, a company founded in 2011, has brought into the market a MySQL-database-as-a-service that that removes outages from the equation. Phyken Media, a video game studio for mobile platforms, developer of “Wizard Ops Tactics” is GenieDB’s marquee customer. Kunal Patel, President of Phyken Media, was faced with two huge challenges;
 

1/ during development of the game he had to have access to robust technology that could scale to production rapidly,

2/ be able to deploy into multiple geo locations for multiple-cross-region-player challenges without having to install and manage multiple servers.

In such a rapid-fire environment, where all the data is “hot”, Kunal and his team of developer-artists turned to GenieDB to utilize its MySQL database-as-a-service offering which he said is hugely disruptive enabling globally distributed databases where all nodes remain synchronized.

To get to know more about GenieDB we had a very detailed Q&A with Sumeet Sheokand, CTO, GenieDB. Given below is an excerpt from the interview.

Techaisle: What is the motivation behind GenieDB and in particular MySQL-as-a-Service?

Sumeet Sheokand, CTO: GenieDB is built with the aim of dramatically simplifying database management in the cloud for business critical applications. Dealing with cloud outages, network latency, redundancy, replication, tuning, etc. can be very painful and time consuming, distracting precious IT resources away from other core business areas.  We want to evolve this vision to the point where you no longer need a team of DBAs to manage complex, distributed database platforms. We will either automate processes or provide a very simple interface to manage hundreds of highly available, low latency MySQL databases ready for any cloud infrastructure, anywhere in the world. It is well known that the only way of overcoming the challenges of cloud outages and network latency is to distribute copies of the database across wide geographical areas, a historically difficult problem for relational database architectures. GenieDB makes this critical functionality available to all businesses and all budget sizes, in a very easy-to-use package. In keeping with the theme of making it easy, we offer our core technology as a Database as a Service (DBaaS). This allows us to offer our users a point and click ability to deploy geographically distributed database servers with automated management and monitoring already in place.

Techaisle: What problem are you trying to solve? Especially, how can small and mid-market businesses benefit from GenieDB?

Sumeet Sheokand, CTO: We have created a geographically distributed database fabric that removes the database as a single point of failure and makes cloud-enabled MySQL database provisioning, management and monitoring an exceedingly simple affair.  With our service, the small and mid-market businesses can focus on running their businesses or building their applications rather than worrying about architecting complex distribution, replication and failover systems, not to mention installing, patching and maintaining backups. All the rote tasks of using databases will be taken care of by our service.

Techaisle: Is the service a better mousetrap than others that are available in the market?

Sumeet Sheokand, CTO: The comparison between what is available in the marketplace today and GenieDB can best be described as the difference between a database-in-the-cloud vs. a Cloud Database.  The existing DBaaS solutions are simply databases which have been put into the cloud utilizing a variety of scripts (i.e. "A Few Scripts-as-a-Service").  These offerings are partial solutions as they do not remove the complexity of building distributed systems in the cloud.  Some only offer single locations; some only offer it in certain locations, while others don’t offer an easy path to grow the database with business traffic. Through our proprietary storage engine, GenieDB has fundamentally transformed the way a relational database functions in the cloud, removing all of these common pain points within the database layer. Businesses can choose their cloud providers, their locations and size, and know that their database will be available, responsive and grow as their business grows, with minimal effort.

Techaisle: How do you think it is different from Translattice, NuoDB, Galera?

Sumeet Sheokand, CTO:  GenieDB stays true to MySQL, the most commonly used database in the world, as compared to Translattice (Postgres) or NuoDB (Not MySQL, custom). GenieDB also offers an ‘Eventually Consistent’ model that allows us to place the nodes as far apart around the world as the business needs and deliver local database performance, instead of being limited by network distance (Galera).

Techaisle: Is GenieDB’s approach similar to Google’s Spanner?

Sumeet Sheokand, CTO: GenieDB has some conceptual similarities to Google Spanner, such as a consistent Clock around the cluster. GenieDB uses software Lamport Timestamp based clock compared to Google’s hardware based clock. Even though there are similarities, GenieDB was developed independent of the Spanner effort. It was nonetheless a great validation of our vision and approach. Google Spanner is also not available as a product for businesses at large to use in their own applications. GenieDB is available today to reap the same benefits.

Techaisle: Can it be deployed only across Amazon or other cloud providers as well? Do end-users have a choice of cloud provider they feel comfortable with?

Sumeet Sheokand, CTO: GenieDB is currently available across Amazon, Rackspace and Google’s cloud services. We are actively working on integrating a handful of other popular providers, including HP, into the service. We will be happy to work with our customers to accelerate their cloud of choice for integration.

Techaisle: The future is Hybrid as we all know it, so how does it work if in a customer’s environment there are both on-premise and cloud based MySQL databases?

Sumeet Sheokand, CTO:  GenieDB core software is agnostic to machine location. It just needs a Linux machine with network access. It is because of this capability, that we can build a database cluster across multiple cloud providers. Hence, we can support any Hybrid configuration, if we have access to the machines. There are business and security concerns on providing full access that would need to be figured out.

Techaisle: Why did you choose MySQL for database-as-a-service?

Sumeet Sheokand, CTO: MySQL is the ubiquitous database for modern applications. It is by far the most widely installed and used database in the cloud today and hence is the basis of our service.

Techaisle: Most of the SMBs do not have IT staff let alone database administrators. Can it still be deployed with limited technology knowledge?

Sumeet Sheokand, CTO:  Deploying GenieDB does not need any technical knowledge, staff or application changes besides pointing the application to the GenieDB provided database location.  It is this [SMB] specific target audience for which we designed GenieDB.

Techaisle: How do you help SMBs in understanding the technology and how the service solves their business pain points?

Sumeet Sheokand, CTO: GenieDB has extensive amount of information available at its site including FAQs, White Papers and Demonstrations. We also offer a one week, free trial of the service and support so that potential customers can experience the service before buying.  We are of course happy to spend as much time as necessary to get any new client comfortable with our service.

Techaisle: For type of SMB customer is this solution most suitable?

Sumeet Sheokand, CTO: GenieDB is a Storage Engine for MySQL and as such is a general solution. Hence, GenieDB works with any application that works with MySQL today. From a business perspective, any business that is running a critical application on a single database could benefit from GenieDB, so that if one database server goes down, others are still available and the application will continue to work without any downtime.  Typically we see customers that are starting a new project or that have an existing project that is anticipating growing traffic or is becoming more business critical.

Techaisle: What is a typical deployment timeframe?

Sumeet Sheokand, CTO: Nodes are spun up and the cluster made available within minutes. Most applications can be up and running against GenieDB under an hour, including data transfer. The actual duration does depend on the amount of data to transfer and the upload capacity available from the customer site.

Techaisle Take

At last count, MySQL is still the most widely used database for cloud deployments and is easily the one that SMBs use extensively. However, MySQL’s continued dominance is being questioned since it was ingested by Oracle through its Sun acquisition. Although Postgres is usually considered to be more powerful and meant for big data sets, there is yet no visible mass migration from MySQL to Postgres. The success of GenieDB and the decision to use its DBaaS is not dependent upon the debate of MySQL vs. Postgres but GenieDB’s relevance for the most-used open source database. GenieDB has created a very useful solution for SMBs but will be challenged to capture mind-share of IT consultants, service providers and the developers who are advisors to SMBs for development of applications based on multi-nodal, geographically dispersed, tightly synchronized MySQL databases. Apart from focusing on growing its customer base GenieDB will have to continue to add feature sets, capabilities and integrate with different regional cloud providers. For now, GenieDB’s MySQL-as-a-Service receives check marks for its simplified usage, ability to integrate with all MySQL applications, rapid deployment, cloud portability (not being locked-in with a single provider) and above all making the database immune to outages.

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