Channel partner programs, Business continuity, MSP, Small business, Storage

eFolder Growth Triggers Inflection Point

Ted Hulsy
Ted Hulsy
Francois Daumard
Kevin Hoffman

eFolder is set to centralize and expand its staff in a Denver headquarters. But that also means some very familiar channel leadership, sales and marketing veterans will gradually exit the business continuity company.

First, the big picture. eFolder is growing and profitable. In fact, the company became cash flow positive over the past year, according to CEO Kevin Hoffman. Revenue for certain product lines has tripled in recent months. And the company's partner community has grown from about 300 MSPs around 2011 to 3,000 MSPs today.

Translation: eFolder isn't the biggest BDR (backup and disaster recovery) company on the block -- but the business has seen significant growth. And growth often triggers business inflection points.

Chief among them: How can eFolder better manage its next stage of growth? The answer, Hoffman tells ChannelE2E, involves an expanded headquarters with centralized executives coupled with a truly integrated sales and marketing function. With those goals in mind, eFolder is rallying around a 25,000 square foot office in the Denver, Colorado area.

Now, The Challenges

Still, the inflection point and business transition will involve some very familiar names exiting the company. Among those eventually leaving eFolder, Hoffman confirmed:

  • Co-founder and Executive VP George Welborn
  • VP for Channel Development Jan Spring
  • VP of Marketing Ted Hulsy
  • Director of Channel Development Nancy Williams

No doubt, those names are very familiar and deeply respected within and across the eFolder channel partner base. During a call with ChannelE2E, Hoffman praised each of those team members for their contributions to the company.

Instead of implementing a jarring channel shift, those familiar names will remain with eFolder over the next few months as the company gradually moves resources and reorganizes around its Denver offices, Hoffman said.

"We know that change can be painful because there are deep relationships involved," said Hoffman. "So we want to make sure there's a good, gradual and successful transition."

More (Not Fewer) Channel Resources

Clues about eFolder's organizational evolution arrived in October 2016, when the company hired Francois Daumard as senior VP of worldwide sales.

Fast forward to present day, and it's clear eFolder is trying to blur -- or erase -- the line between sales and marketing. That's a familiar trend in the IT channel -- particularly with MSP-centric software businesses. ConnectWise, Continuum and Datto all have chief revenue officers (CROs) who closely manage the sales-marketing alignment within their companies.

A similar scenario seems to be unfolding at eFolder. Daumard said channel partners will see more -- not fewer -- channel account managers at the company. In fact, the ratio of channel support personnel to partners will improve, he asserted. And the company will remain 100 percent channel-only, he added.

No doubt, some partners will be surprised -- perhaps even shaken -- as talented channel veterans like Welborn, Spring, Hulsy and Williams exit the company.

Hulsy and Daumard -- like Hoffman -- are sensitive to the changes. But they also point to the bigger picture. "I’m grateful to have been able to serve eFolder for over five years," said Hulsy. "We had about 300 partners when I arrived. Now it's nearly 3,000. It's been a wonderful journey. I am a shareholder and I'm fully committed to a smooth transition. And I am 100 percent in support of the decision" to centralize the growth strategy while leveraging a Denver headquarters, he said.

Looking ahead, eFolder will be hiring "dozens of positions" at all levels across marketing, sales, engineering, DevOps and more, added Hoffman. "If you love the channel and you're in Denver then you should apply," Hoffman concluded.

Joe Panettieri

Joe Panettieri is co-founder & editorial director of MSSP Alert and ChannelE2E, the two leading news & analysis sites for managed service providers in the cybersecurity market.