Rubrik Hires Ex-FireEye CMO In Runup To Potential IPO

Rubrik, a developer of a software-defined platform that unifies data protection, archiving and management across on-premises, cloud and hyper-converged infrastructure environments, has hired a former security company executive as it prepares for a potential IPO.

Kara Wilson, who earlier this month left FireEye, the Milpitas, Calif.-based security vendor, is now the chief marketing officer for Palo Alto, Calif.-based Rubrik.

Wilson told CRN that the chief marketing officer role is a new one for Rubrik, which previously split the responsibilities between the chief technologist who managed the company's technology direction, the head of product marketing, and the head of corporate marketing.

[Related: Rubrik Scores Huge $61M Funding Round, Expands Data Management Focus Beyond VMware]

Sponsored post

Wilson reports directly to Rubrik co-founder and CEO Bipul Sinha.

Rubrik is currently at about the same stage in preparing for an IPO that FireEye was when she joined that company about four years ago, Wilson said.

"The lessons you learn in preparing a company for an IPO and for high growth are very useful," she said. "FireEye was hiring 30 people per week at IPO time. Rubrik is in a similar position now. Rubrik is now preparing for an IPO and for solid growth. But it also has to get beyond the hype of the IPO to get ready for the post-IPO period."

Passionate people and disruptive technology are what attracted Wilson to Rubrik, with the work to prepare for life as a public company an added bonus, she said.

"Rubrik has built a very strong culture," she said. "We're getting more rigor for building the organization for the post-IPO world. We're building revenue and a marketing model for growth after the IPO. Rubrik has only been in business about three years, but it's built a remarkable business. It's approaching a $100 million run rate."

While part of Rubrik's sales are done directly, 100 percent of the business is fulfilled through channel partners, Wilson said.

"There isn't a decision that is made today that doesn't also include looking at what it means to partners," she said.

Rubrik has a history of good communications with customers and partners, said John Downey, founder of NextGen Storage, a New York-based solution provider and Rubrik channel partner.

"Kara has big shoes to fill at Rubrik," Downey told CRN.

Downey said that, if he were a larger Rubrik partner, he would be first in line to ask Wilson to focus more on cloud-enabled organizations in the channel.

"Being cloud-first is exceedingly important," he said. "Vendors and partners are doing a lot of on-prem business even as the market is opening up to the cloud transition. Rubrik needs to make sure it empowers both large and small partners to be successful."