CFO’s Corner: Ian Charles of Host Analytics

CFO’s Corner: Ian Charles of Host Analytics

Ian Charles is a strategic CFO with broad financial experience and a passion for building businesses. Having amassed 15 years of experience in senior finance roles, Ian was the CEO of IMC Capital Partners, where he led many successful software investments and advised technology startups in strategic development and financial analysis. Ian was CFO at RMG Networks, a digital media firm backed by Kleiner Perkins that grew rapidly and executed multiple acquisitions to establish a leadership position in digital out-of-home media. Ian was a founder and CFO at Rex & Co, SVP of corporate development for UNX, and vice president and equity research analyst for SG Cowen. He started his career as director of corporate development for AOL Time Warner, leading new acquisitions and strategic partnerships. We asked Ian a few questions about his experiences as a CFO: Q: You spent many years on the investment and corporate development side of things. What made you want to become a CFO? A: Good question. When you spend as many years as I did in corporate development and as an analyst in banking, you learn many things about a business and what drives it. You learn and understand the nuts and bolts of the business – R&D investment, customer growth and retention, revenue, employees, costs, cash flow, and how the key metrics illustrate strengths and weaknesses. So it was a natural step into the CFO’s seat. As CFO, one has purview and influence over the entire organization from a numbers point of view and my background of Corporate Development and as an Equity Analyst created a natural transition. After all, who is...
Five Ways to Ensure a High-Performing, Scalable Hybrid Cloud

Five Ways to Ensure a High-Performing, Scalable Hybrid Cloud

As more devices churn out more data than ever before, organizations need storage solutions that are cost-effective yet maintain high performance levels. Now that scalable and affordable software-defined storage is available, data centers around the world are making use of scale-out storage solutions. Organizations are always looking for ways to maximize budget efficiency and performance goals. Hybrid cloud enables both by providing the most business flexibility from cloud architectures. In a nutshell, hybrid cloud is a cloud computing environment that uses a mix of on-premise and private and public cloud services, with orchestration between the platforms. Guest article by Stefan Bernbo, Founder and CEO, Compuverde An IDC study found that more than 70 percent of heavy cloud users are considering a hybrid cloud strategy. However, not all organizations are heavy cloud users, and many are still learning about the benefits and challenges associated with deploying a hybrid cloud approach. We’ll offer five design elements you can use to ensure your hybrid cloud delivers the performance, flexibility, and scalability your organization needs. 1) The Crucial Role of Scale-Out NAS Since hybrid cloud architectures are relatively new to the market—and even newer in full-scale deployment—many organizations are unaware of the importance of consistency in a scale-out NAS. However, a scale-out NAS is the cornerstone of a hybrid-cloud storage solution. Many environments are eventually consistent, meaning that files that you write to one node are not immediately accessible from other nodes. This can be caused by an improper implementation of the protocols, or integration that’s not tight enough with the virtual file system. The opposite of this is being strictly consistent: Files are accessible from all nodes at...
Clouds Are in the Forecast for Network Management

Clouds Are in the Forecast for Network Management

Cloud computing has taken over many areas of the data center, from servers, to applications and storage, to backup. But one data center technology that has, so far, resisted the appeal of the cloud is the network: It doesn’t typically lend itself to the portability and management capabilities of virtualization and the cloud. However, there is one area where cloud computing is making an immediate impact on the network — namely in network management and administration. Historical SaaS-based network management In its basic form, cloud-based network management is simple: It allows a company to centralize management of all networks across locations and offices through a management interface running in a third-party hosted environment, or as a Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) application. Cloud-based network management isn’t totally new, but for the most part, it has been targeted by organizations with many small locations or offices that need wireless network capabilities, but don’t have on-site IT staff capable of managing the network itself. Good examples of the types of businesses that have traditionally embraced cloud or SaaS-based network management include fast food, coffeehouses, and hotel chains. In these businesses, central IT can mail out a wireless network device, have the on-site manager plug it in, and then, IT can administer and control the network centrally using the cloud-based management interface. This approach offers lots of efficiencies and benefits, but was traditionally avoided by enterprises, who considered it to be lacking in high-end management options and possibly a security risk. Increasing use cases, increasing network performance  However, recent trends show that cloud-based network management is moving beyond these use cases and defeating these preconceptions. More wireless and traditional networking...
Why Salesforce Doesn’t Have to be Just a Public or Private Cloud Transaction

Why Salesforce Doesn’t Have to be Just a Public or Private Cloud Transaction

In February 1999, Salesforce was founded with a mission to simplify customer relationship management (CRM) applications for customers, and it was provided as a service, versus installing software. They sent out the simple yet bold message of “No Software,” indicating that regular enterprises should not be installing, managing, and upgrading their CRM application, and should instead consume it as a service, leaving all the headaches to Salesforce. Guest article by Ajay Gulati, Co-founder and CEO of ZeroStack Now, let us compare a CRM application with a cloud and see which one is more complex: CRM Application Private Cloud One application Platform to run hundreds of applications Few services that need to work together Dozens of complex services needed to manage compute, storage, networking resources Controlled by a few admins Designed to provide self-service to developers Application needs to be highly available Cloud management software pieces need high availability in addition to applications Impacts one team May impact several teams in the company Backbone for sales Backbone for company’s IT Can be installed as one siloed application High degree of consolidation by design No matter which dimension you pick out of this table, a private cloud is much more complicated than a CRM application. This is not to suggest that CRM is easy or less complex to set up, but to highlight that private cloud is an even bigger beast to tame. This explains, to me, why the adoption of private clouds has been slower than public cloud. Here are some of the specific challenges in building a private cloud. Too many moving parts A private cloud consists of compute, storage, and networking resources along with the...
Elevate Your Treasury and Risk Management Solutions to the Cloud

Elevate Your Treasury and Risk Management Solutions to the Cloud

The volatility of global markets, along with trepidation about increased risk, leads to a need for greater transparency when managing treasury and risk. One such way Best-in-Class finance departments are navigating these obstacles is by becoming more collaborative in nature. This is best achieved with integrated treasury and risk solutions. More and more, Best-in-Class organizations are transitioning these platforms away from locally installed, licensed software and migrating them to the cloud. Here are just a few benefits they’re enjoying:     To learn more, read our report: Improve Treasury and Risk Management Through Integrated Cloud...
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