Getting A Foot In The Door In Europe

Had some very interesting conversations in the past few weeks with a number of US-based vendors across primarily the security and optimisation sectors, with one commonality – established in the Americas but significantly less so in UK/EMEA.

The other issue for these companies currently lies in the uncertainty surrounding the UK and the dreaded “B” word; ideally these US vendors want an HQ in an English speaking location – well they do share some words – but not one that might be stranded from the rest of Europe (and the world).

A perfect example is Cybera, established enough in North America in the SD-WAN/WAN edge markets to be rated number one by Gartner in the small footprint retail WAN use case, but largely unknown in EMEA. And here’s the point – a WAN edge tech that excels in the branch/small office, SOHO, SMB and related environments is surely tailor-made for Europe, given its proliferation of distributed, small footprint locations favoured by so many companies – not least retail, banking, insurance…

Even then, as Roger Jones from Cybera explained to me, it’s not a simple 1:1 solution mapping from US to UK company equivalents. For example, in retail outlets, the US is way behind in terms of adopting contactless payment tech, so it’s not a case of a “one size fits all” solution. Equally, however, that opportunity is just as live in EMEA as it it is the US. For a lot of these vendors, some kind of “foot in the door” approach is a great way of making the first step (pun intended?) towards establishing a customer base in a new region. Cybera, like clients of mine I’ve worked with in the past, such as Aritari, has a great “foot in the door” approach in the form of an overlay solution which avoids the need to convince the customer to uproot their existing investment (which, let’s face it, they won’t!) but simply adds value to what they already have. Of course, down the line, the idea is indeed to replace their existing infrastructure but – shhh – I didn’t say that.

Meantime, I’m hoping to see more of the Cybera tech and monitor its EMEA footprint expansion, in spite of the current economic uncertainty. Another case of “watch this space”…

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