Former EMEA licensing boss Ian Camino has said his new firm Cloud Optics is on track to become the number-one independent licensing consultancy, claiming that the confused cloud market is crying out for more independent help.
London-based Cloud Optics was set up a year ago and is aiming for £3m revenue by 2018. At the moment it has seven staff and 10 associates, and has negotiated one million client seats and saved them £128m collectively in licensing costs. The firm specialises in Microsoft, Oracle, IBM and SAP, but does not sell any software, which it claims makes it fully independent.
Camino (pictured) joined the firm last month from Insight, where he spent more than a decade, most recently running its licensing business in EMEA.
Camino said independence is crucial to the firm's credibility and sets it apart from competitors.
"We don't just do the analytics, but rather the whole end-to-end, including sitting at the negotiating table hand in hand with the client," he said. "We have unique methodology that translates really well across all four vendors. We are absolutely independent - we do not sell any software - period. So we do not have any vendor relationships to be sensitive to or preserve. Additionally and most important of all, our recommendations are responsible and will always meet our clients' technology needs not just in the short term but for the next three to five years."
He said in terms of competition, Cloud Optics' independence clears the playing field.
"We are somewhat in our own space," he said. "If you think of the Deloitte-type companies, they're typically more audit orientated [and] the small boutiques tend to be single-vendor focused, and when they're not, they seem to stop at the analytics stage. There are two or three LSPs that have made great headway in this space in recent times, differentiating themselves beyond just being SAM partners. Ultimately though, my sense is that a client will always have some reservations around their objectivity - it's difficult to be both the software supplier and the software licence optimiser driving down software spend for your client - that conflict of interest will always exist."
He said the industry is now ripe for a new SAM entrant because of the confusion around cloud and subscription-based licensing.
"The time felt absolutely right, especially with the backdrop of all the key changes tier-one vendors are going through, moving clients across to online subscription models with all the related licence metric and programmatic changes that are coming into effect to reflect these technology changes. They are creating new challenges, opportunities and considerations that clients now face, coupled with the maturity of offerings by Amazon, Google and so on. The timing feels perfect for Cloud Optics to really add value."
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