Server maker Verari sparks back into life
Equity-backed founder retakes the helm
Say goodbye to Verari Systems, and say hello to Verari Technologies.
As El Reg has been chronicling, the boutique blade server and storage maker and provider of containerized data centers hit the financial rocks in early December 2009 and after a few weeks of pondering the options, the handful of top brass left at the firm - who had been brought in by outside equity backers in Verari - put the company's assets up for sale in early January.
The bids were collected on January 7, and wouldn't you know it, Dave Driggers, the original founder of Verari Systems who was working as its chief technology officer up until the day he was fired (along with most of the other employees at the company) has emerged with "substantially all of the assets" of the original Verari Systems and is now leading the new Verari Technologies.
Driggers is not yet talking to the press about his plans for reinvigorating Verari in terms of products and personnel or about who his financial backers are, but is expected to chat with El Reg once he settles in. The company has not divulged what Driggers' title is yet, but Verari's updated executive pages show that Driggers is chairman and chief executive officer, with Jerry Loe as executive vice president of field operations, Victor Tung as vice president of engineering, and Paul Mecucci as vice president of sales operations.
There had been some rumors going around that server rival Cisco Systems, which had partnered with the old Verari to use its Forrest containerized data center to deploy Cisco's "California" Unified Computing System blade servers at the NASA Ames research center as part of its Nebula cloud platform, was in the process of buying up the container biz, but all of the intellectual property and inventory relating to the container data centers remains with Verari Technologies.
That new company has all of the intellectual property relating to BladeRack2 servers and storage (including its patented vertical cooling technology), and Driggers' backers shelled out enough dough for Verari Technologies to buy all of the company's manufacturing and engineering equipment and its product inventories. It is not at this point clear what assets of Verari Systems the new Verari Technologies was not able to acquire. The terms of the acquisition and the number of entities chasing the assets were not divulged.
The idea behind the new server company is an oldie but a goodie: get back to basics.
"We have the opportunity to go back to our roots of being a consulting company that heavily partners to deliver custom solutions for our customers," Driggers said in a statement announcing the revived company. "The 'new Verari' is going to build stronger partnerships with our customers while delivering the solutions they require. I'm a strong believer that companies are more successful when they listen and collaborate with their customers."
Verari was founded in 1996 in San Diego as a computer parts retailer and in 2002 changed its name to RackSaver and started building its own rack-mounted servers. In 2004, the company invented vertical cooling for its racks and bought a company called MPI Software for its management tools, pocketed some venture capital, and changed its name to Verari Systems.
Todd, you're way off my friend...
Todd, despite your cute names and sayings, you don't have a clue. Verari was doing fine when it was ran properly. We were profitable and growing. We were going up against the big guys all day long -- and winning.
I know, I was there, I was doing it.
However, I was also there to see the change, see what it did, and how we died.
Over 1/2 the time we'd win, it wouldn't be on price (we'd be about the same -- sometimes a bit more -- sometimes a bit less). We had better tech, a better org for customers to work with, smart sales people, and a team that was focused, fast, hungry, and confident.
Once that dynamic ended, it was only a matter of time. We became big, unfocused, sloppy, lazy, overly structured, and unmotivated. People quit being personally and invested with what happened with the company. It turned into a normal 9-5 job (not a 'bad' job, but just a job vs. something you really felt part of)
I'm still saddened about what happened. And I'll admit, I still get bitter when I see people make comments about why Verari failed when they haven't a clue.
(PS: I speak for myself and my OPINION of the feelings of others based on conversations and being there)
Ja, Ja, gut think
Das Verari name was too confusink anyway. I had a heat attack each time my son told me "Vater, I have crashed the Verrari".
Rakable read Verari
Verari, RackGI are not big enough tin shifters to compete with very large tin shifters, e.g. Dell and HP, and even IBM. They had an angle for a couple years when the big boys stayed loyal to Intel, and they grabbed market share as AMD had a better CPU. That changed 3 years ago, and since then they have been on borrowed time. I would love to meet the VCs who put ~$50million into Verari, smile and ask WTF were you thinking of?
It's a sad state of affairs, but being cheap isn't enough any more and innovating is getting harder and harder to do.