The explosive growth of connected devices has created a new norm: owning several mobile gadgets. Now, we see the reality of the internet of things where offices and even household appliances and utilities, cars and grocery can be done online. But connectivity also poses new challenges and managing along with securing them from outside threats are the new problems one has to deal with. As Fred Rees explains, this is exactly the value proposition his company offers, as a solution to this modern day dilemma. Rees is the vice president for the Asia Pacific Region of BlueCat, a Toronto-based company whose expertise is IP Address Management (IPAM) and network intelligence.
At a recent press briefing organized by its Philippine partner Computrade Philippines, Rees spoke about how the phenomenal growth of connected devices requires a new approach to network and device management, and how BlueCat solutions provide a smarter way to connect to mobile devices, applications, virtual environments and clouds. He talked about how unified mobile security, address management, automation and self-service can translate into a rich source of network intelligence that can be used to protect one’s network, reduce IT costs and ensure reliable service delivery.
BlueCat has been around for quite sometime, although the company was formally established in 2001. “We’re reinventing, at the moment, around the address manager, the connectivity control and the interfaces into complementary technologies to enable us to serve the market-changing dynamics around mobility, around cloud, around new paradigms about security.”
What makes them even better than before he says is that “we believe that the value of the connectivity data—a rich source of data from a central control point—is an enabler for business decisions and business intelligence, rather than being simply a policy control or an automation engine for performing basic networking tasks.”
The connectivity information around devices and network activity, coupled with what users are actually doing in terms of what they are resolving, their behavior patterns, will enable more intelligent business decisions, he adds.
They are not an analytics, nor a big data company, nor are they a security company. What they are he says is “the foundation stock for all these things – basic simple connectivity to one’s network,” Rees clarifies. BlueCat allows one to control connectivity, visualize all connectivity information, analyze data – and one can view the security angle around a number of issues, especially with the bring-your-own-device (BYOD) aspect that companies now employ.
The BlueCat market is traditionally larger enterprises, diverse enterprises that are geographically scattered or complicated in terms of their structures, Rees says. These are the ones that have to manage around 50,000 IP addresses or more across an enterprise, such as telcos or large retail businesses.
In the Philippines, apart from partnering with Computrade, Rees also sees potential working relationships with other global players like F5 and Hadoop, because “together we can add more value to the overall solution and become more powerful.”
The regional strategy of BlueCat is to partner with a regional player and a local player at the same time.
Asked how he is able to manage his territory which is the Asia Pacific region, Rees says it’s just a matter of “following the business activity.” He is no stranger to the region. He came on board BlueCat only in July 2014, but he spent more than 26 years in the technology and IT industry, and has held several key positions in APAC since he joined Lucent Malaysia in 1996.
Now based in the BlueCat regional office Singapore, Rees has brought along his family as well. He says he is perfectly at home in the region, and enjoys sports, walking, socializing and traveling—whenever time permits.