Spokane Journal of Business

Egnyte Inc. sets growth plan in motion with move

Tech company to occupy top floors of Luigi’s building

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-—Kevin Blocker
Austin Garner, director of accounts management for the Spokane office of Egnyte Inc., says the company could employ 50 people here by the end of the year.

With an immediate eye toward expansion, Egnyte Inc., which bills itself as a hybrid, cloud-based file sharing company with an office located in the Spokane Valley, will move that office to downtown Spokane at the beginning of April to better accommodate expected growth.

Egnyte opened its office here in February 2014 in about 6,000 square feet of leased space in the Springfield Center, at 15404 E. Springfield, in Spokane Valley. It soon will occupy the entire second and third floors of the three-story Luigi’s Building, at 245 W. Main, directly above Luigi’s Italian Restaurant.

In all, it will be leasing about 13,000 square feet of renovated space there.

Austin Garner, Egnyte’s director of accounts management here, says the company has entered into a five-year lease there.

Coeur d’Alene-based Riverstone Resources & Construction is the general contractor and is renovating the space. Project manager Matt Bryan says the company began work on the project at the beginning of February and expects to be finished shortly.

Garner says Egnyte expects to add close to a dozen employees by the end of May, and adds he wouldn’t be surprised if the office here has at least 50 employees by year’s end. 

Over the next two months, Egnyte will add more business development representatives responsible for adding new customers and more account managers to provide continuous service to its customers who have purchased Egnyte’s service, Garner says.

“Right now, there’s an extremely high level of excitement around the company. We’re growing our post-sale teams, and in software as a service, the purchase is effectively never done because it’s a subscription-based service,” he says.

Egnyte provides software to businesses for their enterprise file synchronization and sharing. The company’s developed technology can store files in a company’s existing data center as well as providing cloud computing storage, Garner says.

Egnyte has three data centers, which are located in California, North Carolina, and in Amsterdam for its customers based in Europe, he says.

“Our office service is for businesses with between five and 25 employees, business level for those companies between 25 to 100 workers, and enterprise level for those with more than 100 employees,” Garner says.

The cost is $8 per user per month for the company’s office service, $15 per user per month for business-level clients, and starts at $35 per user per month for enterprise-level service, he says.

Egnyte is based in Mountain View, Calif., and was co-founded there in 2007 by CEO Vineet Jain and Chief Customer Officer Rajesh Ram. It has roughly 300 employees at Mountain View, 100 in Poland, 30 in the United Kingdom, and 30 in Spokane, Garner says.

“There’s a buzz about Egnyte, especially in regards to the Spokane office,” he says.

“This office is a testament to the faith headquarters has in our ability to deliver. We had a three-year lease come and go, and now we’re signing a multiyear lease and doing a buildout with twice the space. We’re busting at the seams with excitement,” he says.

Garner first heard of Egnyte in early 2013 when a former supervisor of his at a previous employer left the company for Egnyte.

“They (Egnyte) were looking for people to work remotely, and in a short period, there were three or four of us in Spokane doing that,” he says.

By February 2014, a little more than a half-dozen Egnyte employees had moved into their current office space, and staffing has continued to grow since then. 

In a 2014 press release announcing the establishment of the Spokane office, Egnyte cited Spokane’s “diverse talent pool fed by Gonzaga and Washington State University graduates.”

Garner declines to disclose annual revenues for Egnyte, a privately held company.

He says co-founders Jain and Ram started the Silicon Valley-based company recognizing that cloud-based technology to store data and information would soon be the future.

Early in the company’s development, however, the co-founders wondered what would happen if customers could access secured information from both the cloud and on-site, physical servers in a seamless integrated fashion.

As a result, the company now offers its cloud-based platform and a data storage alternative that has the ability to merge both cloud and traditional data servers to fit within an organization’s information technology environment, Garner says.

“With our hybrid model, you don’t have to leave behind your on-premises infrastructure. You can sync your on-premises file server to a cloud file server, so if you have multiple locations with multiple file servers, you can unify all those different locations under what we call a single pane of glass,” he says.

The single pane of glass Garner refers to represents a computer monitor, or the screen of a mobile device, through which a user can access data from the multiple servers in operation.

“I particularly like my personal desktop synced, so I’m syncing my computer to a subset of our folders, which takes the guessing game of ‘where did I store this’ out of it. I can take my computer on the airplane and still have access to my files without internet connections,” Garner says.

He adds, “When I look at the computer, I can see all the same business data in our Mountain View location, our Poland and U.K. location even though I’m in Spokane. Our unique advantage is our ability to sync with on-premises technology with our own proprietary software.”

“We’re almost storage agnostic, and we can integrate with Microsoft Office products, Amazon, Google and our own servers,” Garner says. 

In Spokane, he says, Egnyte’s account management team, which provides customer service after businesses purchase Egnyte’s software, is experiencing the fastest level of growth, Garner says.

 Kevin Blocker
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Reporter Kevin Blocker, a University of Colorado alum, is a rec league basketball addict. At age 47, he still sports a 32-inch vertical leap. He has three children, all of whom are hooked on hoops.

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