Q&A: SnapLogic tackles app integration in cloud era

CEO Gaurav Dhillon talks about challenges of integrating legacy and SaaS apps, building the new fabric of IT

Gaurav Dhillon knows a thing or two about integration. In his twenties, he co-founded Informatica and helped thousands of enterprises deal with the challenges of application and data integration in the client-server world. Now, as CEO of San Mateo, California-based SnapLogic, Dhillon is tackling the integration challenges IT shops face in the new world of cloud.

In this installment of the IDG CEO Interview Series, Dhillon spoke with Chief Content Officer John Gallant about how SnapLogic unites cloud apps and legacy systems, and how customers are using the company's tools to ease the move to next-gen data and analytics platforms. He also discussed why data explosion of the internet of things will be a boon for SnapLogic.

Why was SnapLogic founded and what has been the path to date?

The short version -- not the barefoot-in-the-snow-uphill-both-ways version -- is that we put together a project about 10 years ago to investigate whether, using modern web technologies, we could transform the industry of integration. Once we came to that reality that we could, I joined as CEO, we brought in some venture capital, and we've been a corporation since about 2010. It took a few years to get the science right and we got the engineering going on the back of that.

gaurav dhillon headshot\

SnapLogic CEO Gaurav Dhillon

Some of us in this company come from backgrounds in integration in the '90s. I built Informatica as its founder and CEO. I was there for about 12 years, built it into a couple-hundred-million-dollar market-leading company. It was a good run for a 25-year-old entrepreneur.

That said, what I felt was that while we had done very well with the transition from mainframes to client server, we sort of missed the boat on what the worldwide web was doing in business. You could use browsers, load balancers, edge caching and move information around the enterprise. People would no longer use applications, but would use cloud computing, a browser, and some sort of SaaS website to do their sales management, human capital management, help desk functions, and so on and so on. There is a need and therefore an opportunity to provide a new kind of technology to connect all these things that are now moving to the cloud with many of the things that are going to stay on premise for the longest time.

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