Alfresco, RightScale: Open Source’s Next Cloud Move
Alfresco Chief Marketing Officer Ian Howells is talking up a new cloud relationship with RightScale. But that’s not all. More than 1,000 customers now pay for Alfresco’s open source content management system. Next, Howells expects a winner-take-all scenario in the open source market. Should VARs care? You bet. Here’s why.
Stop, Look and Listen
Howells provided details in this FastChat video:
Listen closely and you’ll hear some key points… Including:
- 0:24: The state of Alfresco — who they are and where they’re going
- 1:10: Alfresco momentum — downloads, registrations and subscribers
- 1:50: The largest private open source company in the world?
- 2:0o: Alfresco, RightScale partner in the cloud
- 2:50: Balancing the cloud vs. on-premise debate
- 3:20: The rise of content applications
- 3:45: Cloud hype vs. reality
- 4:22: The message for channel partners
- 5:42: Alfresco’s 2010 priorities
- 7:40: Will open source companies pursue IPOs?
- 8:00: The winner-take-all scenario in open source
- 8:50: The managing toward IPO mindset
Winner Take All?
Clearly, Howells sees big potential for channel partners in the cloud. But a few of his other key points also caught The VAR Guy’s ear — especially that line about winner-take-all scenarios for open source companies.
Howells’ thesis: In the 1990s, there was always room for two or three traditional closed source software companies to compete in specific markets. Key examples: Multiple players in ERP, CRM or database applications.
Fast forward to the open source age, and Howells thinks only one big open source winner will emerge from each market segment. Examples include Red Hat (Linux), JBoss (middleware), SugarCRM (um, CRM), MySQL (databases), etc.
Does The VAR Guy agree with Howells’ winner-take-all statement? In some cases perhaps (example: Digium with Asterisk). But the second-annual Open Source 50 survey — which will start later this month and run through early 2010 — will likely reveal heated channel competition involving a range of open source rivals.
Still, Howells caught The VAR Guy’s attention. As did the Alfresco-RightScale cloud relationship.