Executive Interview: Kaseya CEO Explains Project Helios PaaS, VSA, Cloud FuturesExecutive Interview: Kaseya CEO Explains Project Helios PaaS, VSA, Cloud Futures
Kaseya CEO Yogesh Gupta sat down with MSPmentor at Kaseya Connect in Orlando, Florida to discuss his company's Project Helios platform-as-a-service (PaaS), Virtual System Administrator (VSA) remote monitoring and management (RMM) platform, professional services automation (PSA) integrations and much more. Here are the details.
April 15, 2015
Kaseya CEO Yogesh Gupta sat down with MSPmentor during the event to discuss his company’s Project Helios platform-as-a-service (PaaS), Virtual System Administrator (VSA) RMM platform, professional services automation (PSA) integrations and much more. Here are some of the interview excerpts:
MSPmentor: Tell me about Project Helios.
Yogesh Gupta: Kaseya sells its solutions to managed service providers (MSPs), and by doing so, serves a part of the market that most companies don’t fully understand. There are 70 million people that work for businesses that don’t have an IT person, and that’s what MSPs serve. We want to sell to MSPs, but we want to do it in a completely new way in the cloud.
The problem of IT management is extremely broad, and the way to create an integrated solution in today’s world is to create a platform-as-a-service (PaaS) that is in a specific domain. For example, Salesforce.com (CRM) has built a PaaS for sales and customer-related applications. From a Kaseya perspective, we’re building a path designed for IT management.
Humans don’t generate data as fast as machines. And for each human being, there are now going to be several devices. In IT management, the number of devices is 10 times as many as the number of people in the company.
With Project Helios, we’ve built a sophisticated set of data stores, one for all of the assets themselves and another for users and devices that provides information about who is accessing data and where they are accessing it from so that we can provide the right policies and rules around that. We’re providing a global directory of users, an asset repository for all assets and an infinite store that holds all events and data that comes around what’s going on in the infrastructure.
We don’t see PaaS as something we would sell. What we would do is build apps on top of it, like an app to manage user identities or Microsoft Office 365. We see a whole host of apps sitting above the platform, and the platform will be completely open from day one, so both Kaseya apps and third-party apps can sit on top of the platform.
MSPm: How many Project Helios apps do you expect will be available when the PaaS goes into beta this summer?
Gupta: The private beta will probably start with just a few apps, and they’ll be Kaseya apps. The key will be to make sure we have a few apps that are good and solid and we go from there. I wouldn’t be surprised if there were a dozen apps available from Kaseya by the time Project Helios is generally available.
MSPm: How does Project Helios fit into Kaseya’s roadmap?
Gupta: VSA is the core product, and I think for a significant period of time, VSA will continue to be the right product for the vast majority of our customers. Project Helios will come out and provide a different way of doing things. We expect to support both VSA and Project Helios and continue to move forward with both. We will provide our existing customers with the ability to use Project Helios apps with VSA if they want, and over time, the market will tell us what to do.
The key here is that there are new problems that need to be addressed and new ways in which old problems need to be addressed. Project Helios addresses both those aspects.
MSPm: Tell me more about the Kaseya VSA sandbox you mentioned during your keynote address.
Gupta: We introduced a VSA sandbox for on-premise and cloud customers, so we’re giving our customers a sandbox of their choice. They can use the sandbox for testing new releases from Kaseya and testing policies and changes they want to make and then move everything over to a production environment.
MSPm: What are your company’s cloud plans going forward?
Gupta: Today, we have a private cloud infrastructure that we use and manage. It’s Kaseya’s private cloud, and we’ve invested in it. The infrastructure, performance and fault tolerance work that we have done in the cloud positions us really, really well to grow our business.
We’re also getting closer in helping MSPs support customers’ hybrid cloud environments, and we are really excited about that.
MSPm: A few weeks ago you would neither confirm nor deny any PSA partnerships. Do you have any updates?
Gupta: We are not announcing any PSA partnerships, but we have done two things. We have worked with MSP Assist to build very close, tight integrations with both Autotask and ConnectWise. We did that ourselves. We are offering that to our customers because we decided that it is in our customers’ best interests to provide these integrations.
MSPm: Kaseya acquired AuthAnvil last year and 365 Command in 2013. Are you targeting growth through acquisitions?
Gupta: The reality of acquisitions is that they are the result of a combination of factors. An acquisition needs to make strategic sense for both companies involved. Both companies have to believe it is better to be together than it is to be separate.
At Kaseya, we want to continue to offer additional services to our customers and products that they can make new services on and make money on. I don’t want to just offer technology for the sake of technology.
If we find something in the market that makes sense for both sides, and if it means we can offer our customers an additional new service, then I’m very interested. And from a back-end technology perspective, acquisitions would have to be in the cloud.
I would be surprised in the next six to nine months if we don’t acquire somebody, but that’s just a habit of ours. We’re restless people.
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