Feeds

Enterprise whales leave R&D to the startup minnows

Until you hit on something tasty - then we'll eat you up

High performance access to file storage

Storagebod Why are the small flash vendors innovating while the big boys don't bother? Why are they leaving them for dust? More to the point, do the big firms care?

Innovation in large companies is very hard; you have all the weight of history pressing down on you and few large companies are set up to allow their staff to really innovate. Even Google’s famous 20 per cent time has probably not borne the fruit that one would expect.

Yet innovation does happen in large companies. They all spend a fortune on R&D. Unfortunately, most of that tends to be making existing products better rather than coming up with a new product.

Even when a new concept threatens to produce a new product, try getting an existing sales force to sell a new product…well, why would they? Why would I ask a big-tin sales-droid try and push a new concept to my existing customer base? They probably don’t even want to talk about something new; it’s all about the incremental business.

I have seen plenty of concepts squashed which then pop up in new startups having totally failed to gain traction in the large company.

And then there are those genuinely new ideas that the large vendor has a go at implementing themselves. Often they have no intention of releasing their own product, they are just testing the validity of the concept.

Of course, then there is the angel funding that many larger vendors quietly carry out. If you follow the money it is not uncommon to find a large name sitting somewhere in the background.

So do the big boys really care about the innovation being driven by startups? I really don’t think so. Get someone else to take the risk and pick up the ones which succeed at a later date.

Acquisition is a perfectly valid R&D and innovation strategy. Once these smaller players start really taking chunks of revenue from the big boys…well, it’s a founder with real principles who won’t take a large exit.

Of course, seeing new companies make an initial public offering is cool but it’s rarely the end of the story. ®

High performance access to file storage

More from The Register

next story
European Court of Justice rips up Data Retention Directive
Rules 'interfering' measure to be 'invalid'
Dropbox defends fantastically badly timed Condoleezza Rice appointment
'Nothing is going to change with Dr. Rice's appointment,' file sharer promises
Cisco reps flog Whiptail's Invicta arrays against EMC and Pure
Storage reseller report reveals who's selling what
This time it's 'Personal': new Office 365 sub covers just two devices
Redmond also brings Office into Google's back yard
Bored with trading oil and gold? Why not flog some CLOUD servers?
Chicago Mercantile Exchange plans cloud spot exchange
Just what could be inside Dropbox's new 'Home For Life'?
Biz apps, messaging, photos, email, more storage – sorry, did you think there would be cake?
IT bods: How long does it take YOU to train up on new tech?
I'll leave my arrays to do the hard work, if you don't mind
prev story

Whitepapers

Securing web applications made simple and scalable
In this whitepaper learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.
Five 3D headsets to be won!
We were so impressed by the Durovis Dive headset we’ve asked the company to give some away to Reg readers.
HP ArcSight ESM solution helps Finansbank
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Mobile application security study
Download this report to see the alarming realities regarding the sheer number of applications vulnerable to attack, as well as the most common and easily addressable vulnerability errors.