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Allan Paton DTX 2019 Interview

Allan Paton DTX 2019 Interview

NATALIE TURNER [00:00:13] Hello and welcome back to day two of the Digital Transformation Expo. You’re with me, Natalie Turner and my lovely co-host, David Savage. But, I have an even lovelier guest to my right. His name is Allan, of course. And he is the Regional Sales Director of Sliver Peak. Could you tell us a little bit about you, your company and why you’re here today.


ALLAN PATON [00:00:33]  Yeah sure thanks. I am responsible for Silver Peak’s business in the north our company is headquartered in California. I’ve been with the organization now for 18 months. We’ve been growing, expanding our team in the U.K. region because of the market opportunity. That is why I am at Transformation today.


NATALIE TURNER [00:00:50] Amazing, so is this your first time at DTX or have you been coming for a number of years?


ALLAN PATON [00:00:53] I’ve done this, so I am of an age where I have done this a very long time. So as the Silver Peak we do this every year, we do Manchester as well with IP Expo north. We’ve just come back from doing a whole bundle of roundtables at CIO level. And we do a lot of that type of business.


NATALIE TURNER [00:01:09] So what’s the main differences that you’ve seen, you know, from when this first started to how it is today? What’s what’s the main trends that you’re seeing in the market?


ALLAN PATON [00:01:18] For this event, you see an awful lot of people looking at AI. A lot of people looking at analytic space, there’s all of this massive interest in security. There’s lots of different vendors operating in that model there. And you have guys like us who have expanded our footprint for this exhibition because of our company’s growth among transformation.


NATALIE TURNER [00:01:37] So what’s the key message you’re looking to get out today to the audience?


ALLAN PATON [00:01:39] Well, so for us, it’s engagement. We are a fully focussed on that one industry. This is all we do. We focus on Wan and transforming Wans. that’s our legacy because we’re a 50 year old company. So the message for us, this is an opportunity to get to a wider install base because it is a sales footprint. We’re not a massive company, but we are certainly punching above our weight when it comes to the clients we’re working with today. So we do an awful lot of this type of marketing. As I said said earlier, we do a lot of CIO executive roundtables. We do workshops for clients. We do a bundle of training across the UK, at our cost. So this is a marketing opportunity for us.


NATALIE TURNER [00:02:16] So what does Silver Peak have like what’s your USP what’s the competitive advantage that you have above other vendors?


ALLAN PATON [00:02:22] It’s a great question. It’s called focus. This is all we do we’re a very agile organization. And we have a nice interesting brand of channel partners who we work with and an ecosystem of partner vendors we work with because our entire focus is the Wan we are basically there to provide connectivity using the platform make business more agile and get them to access more services at a far simpler approach i.e. cloud connectivity core focus for today. Our platform makes it easier for businesses to make that change and also consume better from those type of environments.


DAVID SAVAGE [00:02:57] If you look at this particular conference as change from IP to digital. It’s almost like it’s gone from tin to services. And looking at your own business, that’s probably true, too. If you’re growing and you’re taking on new staff, how is that changing your business? Because you’re having to be more agile to meet their needs as well as the industry itself.


ALLAN PATON [00:03:15] So the good thing for us we are a software focussed company, we do not make hardware and Silver Peak have been known for this over their whole lifespan has been very focussed, very agile on their software development. So for us for a client to expand the footprint with us. It’s really straightforward. First, their organization for me as a sales leader. So a reasonable approach that we have we work very closely with the channel. We had our first channel conference last week on Wednesday and we had over 175 delegates from the media channel because of the uptake of this particular technology stack. And that’s recognized because this is our entire focus. And there’s a great opportunity for the channel to work with us, because that’s all we do. So you’re not working with a vendor who runs a few hundred product lines. They only talk to Silver Peak. They get a Wan tranformation expert. Both technically and commercially, they’re backed up by us because we have a whole raft of training that we provide at our cost. They have access to our consultants at no cost as well. So we have a really agile way of helping our clients expand their channel, expand and therefore supporting the customer as well.


DAVID SAVAGE [00:04:17] I suppose as this becomes more scalable and as costs tumble, you’re getting a whole range of new customers, right?


ALLAN PATON [00:04:24] Yeah.


DAVID SAVAGE [00:04:25] How are they using the solution? Are they using it in ways that surprise you as a business and force you to adapt?


ALLAN PATON [00:04:30] So for me, when I came on board 18 months ago, I was surprised at the uptake of what you would call classic SD-Wan in the market. The pace of change in this market is incredible. So there was allegedly 60 other vendors talking about it, but there’s only own us and a few others can actually deliver the capability with the right scale. So we talk about with our customer base about, you know, what is it SD-Wan means for them? So therefore, we talk about Wan transformation. We will sit with the customer we’ll review their business needs and maybe talk at a business level, wanting to understand their three to five year strategy around their applications. So what is that application do for your business? What are your core applications? What’s the value to you and what is your operational model look like for rolling that application out and ensuring you have a seamless approach to delivery of that service to your customer or your staff or stakeholders? We have a different approach to the market in how we engage, but the pace is incredible. We have clients, we have over fifteen hundred clients worldwide now who are fully using our platform today. It’s not selling some software and claiming a large scale customer base. These are live clients we have a really interesting reference client base in the UK. And for me it’s how quickly they can make the change. So we have client’s today who one on the stand yesterday. They acquired the technology at the start of September. They been rolled out to fifty sites. So in six weeks, they’ve rolled out fifty sites. And they have done it themselves. They’ve used a third party to do some of the capability. But the actual rollout and configuration and build, they’ve done it that pace.


NATALIE TURNER [00:06:03] Fantastic. I’m so sorry but we have actually run out of time that’s gone really quickly.


ALLAN PATON [00:06:06] Already? My goodness. That’s because I can talk right?


NATALIE TURNER [00:06:08] No but everything you’re saying is very informative. It’s engaging and it’s good to know what you’re here for. And all about Silver Peak as well. I’m sure the audience are very pleased to hear about it too.


ALLAN PATON [00:06:17] Thank you very much.


NATALIE TURNER [00:06:17] Yes. Thank you so much for joining us on Disruptive, it’s been lovely.


ALLAN PATON [00:06:20] Thank you.


NATALIE TURNER [00:06:21] That is all from us for now. However, you can get involved in the conversation on LinkedIn and Twitter if you follow Disruptive Live and hashtag DTX Europe. We’ll be back after a short break. See you in a bit.