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Likewise Rock ‘n’ Roll

100% Growth 2009 vs. 2008

100% Growth (2009 vs. 2008)
On the back of a strong 2008, we’re on track to deliver over 100% sales growth in 2009 which clearly is the exception to the norm.  Our performance allows us not only to drive a strong balance sheet but also to continue to grow headcount including our customer-facing technical resources.  I attribute our success to a variety of factors including our strong products as well as our open source business model.  Likewise Open delivers a high value, free offering for customers that require a scalable authentication solution.  Most of our Likewise Enterprise customers start with Likewise Open and over time expand the scope of their authentication project requirements to include policy, audit, and reporting.  A common theme that I hear from our customers is that they like doing business with us and they like our technical teams.

Record Q1
Q1 was a record quarter for Likewise and while we haven’t finished closing Q2 it is clear that our year-over-year growth should reach or exceed 100%.  Recent wins include Morgan Stanley, NBC, Disney, Boeing, the US Army, Starwood, and the State of Alaska.   Last week, we signed an agreement to significantly expand our relationship with one of our key customers, Safeway, for a large, high profile, mission critical project based on Linux servers.

Overall IT Spending Environment
Yesterday Gartner released an updated 2009 IT spending forecast.  Their new forecast is for a 6% spending decline (revised their earlier forecast of a 3.8% decline).  Hardware fares the worst in their forecast (negative 16.3% growth) and software fares the best (negative 1.6% decline).  Is the IT spending environment continuing to worsen?  No, absolutely not.

Our experience is that with the right value proposition and business model you cannot only survive but thrive in the current environment.  And more broadly, we see a variety of new IT initiatives moving forward as large enterprises continue to look to drive operating efficiencies in their IT organization.  Clearly Q4-Q1 was tough on many vendors; customers insist on a vendors that provide high value and fast ROI.

More Stories By Barry Crist

Barry Crist is the CEO of Likewise Software, an open source company that provides audit and authentication solutions designed to improve security, reduce operational costs and help demonstrate regulatory compliance in mixed network environments.