A word from our CEO
“The underdog who dances with the giants”
It’s been more than a year since Covid-19 hit us. Just like everyone else, we at NetClean had to adjust our business to a different reality. Since we already had a ‘work from home’ policy in place and are used to technology, it was relatively easy to continue to run the day-to-day operations from home. But it was not ideal.
While businesses around the world sent their workforces home, we were in early conversations with global IT giant VMware and I was really nervous about losing speed in that process, and frankly to lose that opportunity. As a small software company from the west coast of Sweden, we are used to dancing with elephants, and I know from experience it’s easy to get trampled on and how painful that can be. But “it’s not about the size of the dog in the fight – it’s the size of the fight in the dog”.
My mission as the CEO of NetClean is to grow our business in new markets, in order to maximize the impact our software products can have around the world. Integrating our products into already existing security and management platforms is a key strategy for us, and that lead to me being introduced to Pat Gelsinger, the former CEO of VMware. We had a common interest in a potential partnership, but I felt a sense of urgency to get the partnership up and running due to both the pandemic and the effect it had on the issue we address. The large-scale shift to remote work has opened up new areas of risk for businesses and the consumption of child sexual abuse material on work IT devices is one of them.
But my fear of losing speed in the process turned out to be overestimated, I found that people (executives in particular) had more time to take meetings. I remember my first meeting with Sanjay Poonen the former COO of VMware. It was a short meeting scheduled and I had prepared myself to the teeth – I really wanted him to get the essence of NetClean and understand the importance of what we do. I had prepared a couple of shiny and crisp slides. After a short presentation, I was ready to go for it but Sanjay took over the conversation completely before I had a chance to show any of my shiny slides. He rapidly asked me a series of tough questions about NetClean, our business, our customers, our market potential, and my strategy going forward. I was really put to the test in that meeting, and I was blown away by the honest interest in our company. Sanjay ended the call saying that he will support us, and he gave me further introductions into the VMware community. He thanked me for the meeting and said that he valued our conversation a lot, he said something like “if you need slides to present your company and get the message through, you don’t know your company enough or what its value really is.” I still think about that.
After hundreds of late-night meetings for us Swedes, and with a lot of help from Sachin Sharma at VMware to navigate in the very large and complex VMware organization, we were encouraged to apply for the VMware Technology Alliance Partner Program.
In May 2020 we announced the TAP partnership together with VMware and started the integration of our software products to VMware’s platforms Workspace ONE and Carbon Black.
In January 2021 we announced that NetClean ProActive and NetClean ProTective are available on VMware’s Workspace ONE platform and in April 2021 we announced the interoperability with VMware Carbon Black EDR. Not a bad achievement for a small remote-working software company on the west coast of Sweden, during an unprecedented global pandemic!
When we advanced in the Technology Alliance Partner Program in early 2021, we started to get the organization ready for the transformation needed to succeed
in our growth journey by appointing a new management team for NetClean.
In the coming blog posts, I will share my thoughts and my experience from our transformation and growth ride. I hope you want to join our ride!
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In the middle of the pandemic, NetClean fundamentally changed its strategy and partnered up with VMware – one of the biggest IT companies in the world. In this blog post, NetClean CEO Anna Borgström reflects on how it is to dance with the giants and what she has learned from some of the industry’s top leaders.