Headquarters: Chevy Chase, Md.
Technology Sector: Software
Key Product: Presto
Year Founded: 2002
Number of Channel Partners: 12 in North America
Ideal Channel Partner: Enterprise-focused solution providers
Why You Should Care: JackBe's mashups present an excellent opportunity for middleware-focused VARs looking to optimize their customers' unwieldy data systems.
The Lowdown: JackBe's flagship product, Presto, is an enterprise platform for mashups -- basically, drawing information from a range of IT applications, internal and external sources and services to make them function together as new, streamlined Web applications.
In the past year, the company -- which has seen extended success in government, among other key verticals -- has focused on bringing its mashups to the channel after a period of selling the technology direct.
"You're not replacing anything -- not a database or a firewall or anything else," said Paul Volkman, vice president of channels and corporate development at JackBe. "You're extending what they already have out there. There's so much you can do with tech mashups, from status dashboards to collaborating on internal company products. The great thing about the channel is that the channel people can take you into the solutions and customers that they're comfortable working with."
Volkman is a 15-year channel vet, having worked previously with Sourcefire, Aether Systems and Riverbed Technologies. JackBe, which was co-founded by entrepreneurs Luis and Jacob Derechin, has in recent years added a number of tech veterans to its management team, including former Sourcefire CEO Wayne Jackson, now JackBe's executive chairman, and former Sun Microsystems CTO John Crupi, now JackBe's CTO.
To Volkman, the channel opportunities for mashups are growing at rapid clip as solution providers become more savvy about making enterprise-level systems and business processes "talk to each other better."
"We're a middleware play, and it's a lot of integration work," Volkman said. "The integrators, the consultants, the classic VARs -- we see all of those different categories as being essential for us. We want to bring a program that's well constructed so VARs feel comfortable working with us and that they're getting the best of what we can do."
Among other resources, JackBe offers a Mashup Developer Community where developers can chat and also reach out to JackBe executives with support questions. JackBe launched it a year ago, and the community now numbers several thousand members, he said.
"There are lots of recipes, and some of our best new partners have come out of there," he noted.
"We're not looking to have everyone become our partner, but we always want a robust enough channel than an end user can find their way in what we do comfortably," Volkman added. "We're all about the Web 2.0 world, and our nature is pulling together applications quickly. Whether you're in commercial enterprise or government agency, everyone has so much money invested in data, but it's frustrating when they have data at Point A and data at Point G and can't bring those together to interpret the data at Point M. That's where we come in, and they see the benefits literally within weeks."