Ronan McCurtin Acronis Cloud Expo Europe 2020
NAYOKA OWARE [00:00:14] Welcome once again to the London Tech Show 2020 vby CloserStill Media right here at Excel London. I am Nayoka Oware hosting for Disruptive Live and I’m joined by Ronan McCurtin, who is the V.P. of Northern Europe for Acronis. Ronan, how are you doing?
RONAN MCCURTIN [00:00:29] Yeah not too bad Nayoka. Thanks for having me here.
NAYOKA OWARE [00:00:31] You’re absolutely welcome. I’m only familiar with one Ronan who was the famous singer, but it’s nice to meet you as well.
RONAN MCCURTIN [00:00:37] He made it, he made it a bit easier to pronounce my name, that’s the important thing.
NAYOKA OWARE [00:00:41] He did. Tell us more about your job role and what it entails.
RONAN MCCURTIN [00:00:45] So I am the V.P. of Northern Europe for Acronis. I run three regions, effectively run the Nordics, run Benelux and I run the UK and I have been doing that for about three years now. We’ve got a team in each region very focussed on on growing our classic and cloud businesses in all those regions.
RONAN MCCURTIN [00:01:00] Wonderful. What do Acronis do? How would you describe the company?
RONAN MCCURTIN [00:01:05] Yeah. So Acronis are a we’re a cyber protection company and a lot of people want to know what cyber protection is and cyber protection is effectively the merging of data protection and cyber security. We’ve been on a bit of a journey. We’ve been at an established 17 years now founded in Singapore and corporate headquarters in Switzerland. Very proud of those two countries, neutral countries, which is very important to us. And we started off 17 years ago. Cast your mind back. Data was very, very central to data centres and laptops and workstations. And and the challenges around data protection and cyber protection has changed significantly over that 17 year period. You know, our mission statement is to protect all systems, data and applications. And that sounds very easy to say, but it’s actually quite a difficult thing to do. Seventeen years ago, data was local to devices. Now it’s everywhere. It’s in your car. It’s in your washing machine. It’s on your it’s on your wrist. It’s in your smartphones. And it’s a lot more difficult to protect. And the journey we’re on we’re trying to make people think differently about data, we’re trying to make them think about the considerations that you need to to to think around data. We often refer to it as the as the fifth basic human right. We talk about air, water, food and shelter. But in Acronis, we believe the fifth human right is to data to a cyber protection. And why is that? It’s because we’re vulnerable if our data is exposed. If we don’t, we don’t take care of that data or organisations that we rely on don’t take care of data. So we we’ve come up with five considerations. Safety, which is a copy of your data and having multiple copies of your data, different media things that accessibility. Seventeen years ago, we didn’t have a lot of data. We’ve a lot of data now. So accessibility is a is another factor in considering considering protecting that data. We don’t want to recover all the data. We want to recover maybe a single e-mail or a small bit of our data. So we need to have efficient ways of recovering that data. Then you’ve got privacy. And I love privacy. And privacy is very, very hot in the media at the moment, has been for the last two years. But privacy, you know, needs to be a bit more dynamic as well. We need to kind of consider privacy as, you know, people we give people access to data. But what are the what are they doing with that data and and how are they using that data? But also, you know, you might give somebody access to data once, but should they have access to it again and again and again. And we want to look at dynamic privacy. And that’s actually questioning and using artificial intelligence to question privacy. Should people be accessing that data again? Then you’ve got authenticity. And I love I love authenticity because we don’t really think about authenticity too much when we when we get data. We get an email from somebody, we get an attachment. But actually, we don’t question whether it’s, you know, is it an authentic email? Data is very easy to change. You know, it’s just ones and zeros. You know, we’ve all experienced these which we can actually manipulate data we have. We have a kind of analogy in Acronis. If you want to destroy a building, you’ve got to actually do a lot of, you know, put a lot of energy into destroying the building. But if you want to destroy data, you don’t need a lot of energy. You just need to know the right ways of doing that. So authenticity of data is really, really important to us. And finally, security and security is probably the most interesting aspect of that, because we have we have, you know, so many cyber criminals these days that are actually going out to try and extort money from us. Even recently as as as as recent as last week, there was a case where cyber criminals were pretending or purporting to be the World Health Organisation sending emails out on a Coronavirus update. But there was a ransomware in the actual email. So cybercriminals are using probably the biggest news topic at the moment to in the world, probably this year to actually extort money. This is the kind of mentality that we’re up against today in the world. And we need to protect our data, our partners data, our end users data. And it’s quite challenging. It’s quite challenging. But that’s that’s a journey we’re on. And that’s why we exist. And we’re taking our partners on that journey with us.
NAYOKA OWARE [00:05:09] Thank you for sharing that with us. Why did you decide to attend the event today?
RONAN MCCURTIN [00:05:16] Um, my marketing team told me to come here. No, they, uh it’s a very important event to us. It’s one of the key events in the year. We get to see a lot of our partners, which is really important to us. You know, continue to build a relationship, but also to kind of, you know, get the name, the brand out there. But also, you know, to, you know, for Acronis, as I said, you know, it’s about you know, it’s about, you know, the wyy. And we want to get the why out there not they’re not the how we do and the what, what we do. It’s about why we do. We want people to be more and more, you know, you know, we want to get our learnings about what we’ve done over the last number of years to our general audience. So I’m doing a presentation shortly about all of that.
NAYOKA OWARE [00:05:53] Thank you for that. Have you seen a lot of growth within Acronis?
RONAN MCCURTIN [00:05:55] Yes. Yes. Yeah massive growth over the last number of years. We’ve we’ve had a hundred percent growth in our cloud business. It continues to grow very, very successfully. And, you know, we have a very, very unique product which encompasses everything that I’ve said earlier on. It’s it’s a single pane of glass that actually manages has several products that are built into it. Very easy to use, very intuitive. Um, you know, we offer that to service providers, which is our key focus. We want to we want to get, we want to add more service providers every day if possible. Service providers love it because it’s simple to use. It’s it’s, um, you know, it’s intuitive. It makes it gives them options around all the products they want to actually deploy to their end users. And it gets all the, you know, the safety, accessibility, privacy, authenticity and security message out there to to their end users so that they absolutely love it.
NAYOKA OWARE [00:06:47] What does the future look like for the company?
RONAN MCCURTIN [00:06:52] Great, I have to say, you know, we’re about to launch a new product at the moment as well. And I think, you know, we’re gonna be one of the companies to look out for in the next, in our area at least, you know, for the next number of years, it’s an exciting place to work. The people are very motivated. Yeah. You know, we wear high frequency good attention to detail. And I think we’ve we’ve we’ve got a very, very good market to go after at the moment. It’s a security market it’s very interesting. The data protection market’s very interesting. The cyber protection message is resonating with our with our with our with our partners. And I think we you know, we found a very, very good place for us and our partners at the moment. And we’re growing together. And we want the important thing in Acronis is we want to grow with our partners. Our partners are very important to us and we want them to be successful if we’re successful. So very, very keen to do that.
NAYOKA OWARE [00:07:43] Thank you so much for your time today, Ronan, and it’s been great speaking to you.
RONAN MCCURTIN [00:07:47] No problem. You’re welcome.
NAYOKA OWARE [00:07:48] Thank you. Thank you for watching. Join the conversation by using the hashtag Disruptive Live and hashtag CEE 2020. We will be back shortly.