The Wall Street Journal published an article yesterday by writer Clint Boulton suggesting Google had begun scaling down its support for Google Apps in order to increase its focus on search and social networking. The following, written by Doug Shepard, president of Cloud Sherpas’ Google Enterprise unit, is Cloud Sherpas’ response.
While Google’s focus on social networking is evident (we love the new G+ UI released today!), we were surprised to read Clint’s assertion that investment in one area must detract from another. The truth is, on the front-lines of the Google Enterprise ecosystem we’re seeing something completely different.
For the outsider looking in, one doesn’t need to look farther than the Google Enterprise blog to see Google’s continued investment in the Google Apps business. New products such as Google Vault that adds archiving, retention and ediscovery capabilities and Google Cloud Storage that enables developers to store and access massive amounts of data on Google’s infrastructure are just two recent additions to their cloud platform that signal investment in the future. Dive deeper into the blog and you’ll see a four-year track record that indicates the same. These frequent updates suggest quite the opposite of Boulton’s conclusion and point to the fact that Google is continuing to invest in Apps, not pull away from it.
Cloud Sherpas’ business is a proxy for Google’s, and we’re seeing acceleration in the market. Revenue is up 200% from 2010 to 2011, our pipeline is growing and we’re seeing more businesses make the switch to Google Apps quarter after quarter. Household names from across industries are switching to Google Apps, placing their faith in the future of Google’s enterprise cloud offering, just as we and hundreds of Google Apps partners have done from Day One.
We work side-by-side with Google on a daily basis and we see them making significant investments in Apps every day. From increasing the number of employees worldwide that support Apps to developing new technology and updating the suite on a regular basis, Google has not signaled any deviation from its commitment to continuing to support and develop the Apps suite.
Finally, Boulton supports his theory with the assertion that recent management changes within Google indicate a shift in priorities. While we were disappointed to hear the news of David Girouard’s departure, we view Google’s decision to appoint Amit Singh, a proven Oracle sales leader, to the helm as a sign of significant acceleration. Singh is dedicated to growing the Apps business worldwide and we see that commitment every day in the field.
We know that the future of millions of businesses worldwide– including ours– depends on Google Apps, and we’re confident Boulton will not see his cloudy prediction come to fruition.