SADA Systems grows its cloud consulting business

The need for cloud consulting—the often untold story of cloud growth—continues to increase, allowing SADA Systems to expand

SADA Systems grows its cloud consulting business
Matthew Mikaelian
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Cloud. Despite all the hype about it being super easy, being self service and having a low on-ramp, the reality is service providers often still need to help organizations with the move to the cloud.

You can tell an area is getting widespread attention when the large consulting firms start pricking up there ears. And so it is with cloud computing, where we have seen over the past few years the large consulting firms (both the “big four” accounting firms and the more traditional IT consulting firms) building out cloud computing service offerings—either from within or via strategic acquisitions of service providers.

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A good example of this came in 2015 when Accenture acquired Cloud Sherpas, a Salesforce and Amazon Web Services (AWS) consulting partner that had grown rapidly over the preceding years via a number of acquisitions and mergers.

And until every traditional accounting and IT services firm has a large cloud practice in place, there will be much opportunity for independent firms to build out their business, get noticed and summarily get acquired by those aforementioned players. That's why so much funding occurs in the space.

A good example of a growing prospect is SADA Systems, a Google, Microsoft and Facebook consulting shop that is announcing some information about the traction this smaller and generally less well-known player is gaining in the marketplace.

SADA Systems' growth

SADA Systems ticks off the triumvirate of cloud offerings: It was a launch partner for Google Apps (now rebranded as G Suite), Microsoft Office 365, and Facebook for work.

The Los Angeles-based company is ramping up its operations with plans to hire rapidly and invest in potential growth. SADA Systems had revenue of $70 million in 2016, up from $47 million in 2015—an interesting statistic given that this sort of revenue figure is often hard to come buy for smaller, privately held companies. The company boasts of some 2,400 customers, up from 1,800 in 2015, and claims it has migrated 20 million users to public cloud, up from 10 million in 2014.

Interestingly, and like other cloud-native service providers, SADA Systems is attempting to branch out and build some of its own IP via specific products. Earlier this month, the company launched Atom, a new asset risk analysis and workforce management application for transportation departments and fleet management companies. It leverages Google's machine learning capabilities, as well as Google Maps and Waze, to help organizations operate more efficiently. IoT is another area where SADA suggests it will continue to make significant investments.

My POV

Cloud is absolutely a high-growth sector. If anyone still doubts that, simply look to Gartner's recent figures, which suggest the market for public cloud services is projected to grow 16.5 percent in 2016 to $204 billion, up from $175 billion in 2015. By 2020, Gartner says "Cloud Shift" will affect more than $1 trillion in IT spending worldwide. Today, only 5 percent of IT spend is in the cloud—and that’s for applications that have been “lifted and shifted.” The market size for brand-new cloud use cases is so large it’s unknown.

Growth SADA and companies it have seen closely mirrors the growth (and potential, it must be said) of the cloud generally. Cloud is easier than traditional IT, but it isn't so easy as to make consulting shops obsolete. The likes of Deloitte, PwC and Accenture are enjoying the huge cloud revenues they’re generating, and SADA is carving itself a good position in the market. Last word goes to SADA Systems CEO Tony Safoian:

"Demand for cloud in the midmarket is growing for a few reasons. First, tech budgets are shifting from IT to line of business, facilitating faster (and more) transactions. Also, legacy systems aren't keeping up with the latest business demands, prompting end users and line of business executives to actively seek solutions in new technologies. Only recently, through the emergence of cloud technologies, have mid-market companies had access to the same computing capabilities as large enterprises—namely, infinite scale, inexpensive storage, machine learning and advanced analytics."

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