I have now been with Veeam for around 100 days. So far, it’s been a rollercoaster ride and a lot of air miles that included two stand-out trips: VMworld US in Las Vegas and VMworld Europe in Barcelona. These events may sound the same, but to me, the experiences were a million miles apart.
VMworld US used to be my show in my previous position at VMware. And now, attending this event as Veeam President and COO was a different experience. It was different, not only because it was held in Vegas for the first time, but also because every 50 yards someone — a former VMware colleague, partner or customer — would grab my arm and say “Hey!” I was asked many times why I left VMware and why I joined Veeam. My answer was the same, that the time was right for me and I was drawn to the massive opportunity at Veeam. This time at VMworld, Veeam owned the place, from the moment I stepped off the plane at McCarran airport, to the Las Vegas strip where Veeam had large advertising placements. Veeam’s prominent branding was everywhere. One guy I spoke to actually referred to the event as “VeeamWorld!” Veeam’s presence excited me, as did the many conversations I had about how the cloud has now come of age, and why Veeam’s approach to Availability and data management has been a real game changer.
Fast-forward to my trip to VMworld Europe and it was much the same as the US, yet also very different. Like in Vegas, Veeam owned Barcelona with branding inside and outside of the El Prat airport. The Veeam imagery was emblazoned on taxis and, once again, Veeam was a killer presence at the event itself. VMworld Europe was a different experience for me, however, because I was able to walk around the event fairly inconspicuously and this allowed me to really soak up what was happening. I was able to engage more customers, partners and the media, and really absorb what was happening. It was also clear that in Europe, like in the US, the cloud is no longer a pipe-dream, but rather, that deployments have really taken hold. The partners I spoke with are energetically moving ahead with new business models to leverage this trend.
I had one major takeaway from Barcelona, which is that Veeam has arrived, and in a big way! Everything in Vegas was big, as was our presence, but in Europe even though the attitude was more subdued, Veeam was still just as big. The Veeam booth was always packed, whereas other booths (especially some of our competitors’ booths) were often quiet. Other vendors were taking aim at us with their marketing, which I love because this shows that we’ve scared them. The Veeam party, which is legendary in Barcelona, was maxed out after just a couple of hours and queues of people snaked around the streets to gain entry. There was a buzz about Veeam throughout VMworld and this was truly infectious. This excitement and buzz stayed with me as I boarded the plane to come home and found that I could not stop smiling.
While the two trips were very different, they both showed how dominant Veeam has become in the industry. They also showed how thoroughly our brand, following and leadership in the market are now embraced by so many of our customers and partners. When people ask me why I joined Veeam, it’s pretty clear why!