Every week there seems to be a new cloud-based file sharing option launching. At some point, as the market matures some vendors will take a bow and others will join forces to create new, more comprehensive offerings. SkyDox and Workshare must have gotten the memo early. The pair announced today that they are joining forces.
SkyDox + Workshare = Cloud Document Collaboration
SkyDox, which provides a cloud-based file sharing and synchronization tool similar to, well, almost everyone, and document collaboration provider Workshare are merging to form a new company that will provide policy-based, cloud-enabled file sharing and enterprise collaboration.
SkyDox’s CEO, Anthony Foy, will lead the new organization. Workshare CEO Scott Smull will have “multiple key executive responsibilities as part of the Executive Integration Team and spearheading customer advocacy activities.”
The new company, which has not been named publicly, plans to deliver a combined application within the next 90 days to beta participants. However, the final integration of the companies and technology will not be complete until the final quarter of 2012. SkyDox and Workshare said support and development for both products will continue without interruption.
This effort is clearly a move to create a company that can effectively compete in the enterprise file synchronization market. Merging the companies closes major capability gaps, and if marketing landing pages are to be believed (they aren’t), creates a customer base of over two million users. If all features stay intact once the integration is complete, the company will also have a few novel features like metadata removal and redaction.
The File Synchronization and Collaboration Market
It’s unlikely that a few features propel the company to the top of the market. Major companies like EMC and Vmware are investing heavily in the space and so are content management providers like SpringCM. Even after the market matures, there will be no one best solution. Organizations will select enterprise synchronization solutions that provide the same ease of use and device portability as consumer-oriented tools like DropBox, integrate with their core systems and enforce security policies.
Given these needs, solutions from larger vendors will likely dominate the space as the market settles. This doesn’t mean that niche players won’t have a role, but vendors that provide multiple components to the organization will be able to provide a more tightly integrated experience to the end user.