Just months after the investment by inWebo Group was announced, it is already paying off for TrustBuilder. Accelerated product development, more commercial oomph and a first joint customer. In our bimonthly interview sessions with TrustBuilder CEO Frank Hamerlinck, we have many new developments to discuss.
Speed is a coveted quality these days. But still, it’s amazing how fast our collaboration with inWebo Group is bearing fruit. Do you agree?
Frank: We have hit the ground running, as they say. As soon as the investment was closed, our teams started working together: in R&D, in Sales, in Marketing… The product sets of TrustBuilder and inWebo Technologies are complementary, and that eliminates a lot of the stress and politics that you usually see in this type of partnership. That allowed us to take big steps immediately. As you know, in the inWebo Group we are pursuing a buy and build strategy, so there’s a lot of excitement still ahead of us.
Faster to the market
Tell us about some of the first results of the collaboration.
Frank: I am especially proud of the fact that we have already signed up a first joint customer. The Vlerick Business School will be the first to benefit from TrustBuilder’s end-to-end Identity and Access Management (IAM) suite in combination with inWebo’s powerful Multi-factor Authentication (MFA). Working on this joint project is bringing our teams even closer together, which can only deliver more benefits to our companies. And to our customers.
And on the product side?
Frank: The next major release of TrustBuilder, version 11, will come to market much earlier than expected. Thanks to the extensive investment in R&D, we are six months ahead of the release schedule. Bringing this new release faster to the market is of real importance to our customers.
What do you see as the most important novelties in TrustBuilder 11?
Frank: We have added a very strong Identity Management component to the TrustBuilder suite. Self-service capabilities will give more power to the end-user setting their own preferences. It makes onboarding easier while end-users can also manage their applications, authenticate for applications using different Identity Providers and manage their settings.
Delegated administration, on the other hand, provides more flexibility to the admin teams.
And with TrustBuilder 11, we are also offering a full cloud implementation. I am very happy to see that both new and existing customers are embarking on their journey to the cloud together with us.
It’s all about people
When people see companies coming together, they immediately think of synergies, rationalization and the loss of jobs. That is not the case with TrustBuilder joining the inWebo Group?
Frank: Quite the contrary. Over the last months, we have hired extra talent in product development, sales and professional services. They have a perfect fit with our company values Commit – Collaborate – Celebrate. TrustBuilder is the perfect place for them to further improve their skills and grow their experience. And we will continue to recruit both experienced people and well-trained specialists who are still beginning their careers. We have multiple open positions. Investing in talent is made possible thanks to our membership of the inWebo Group and the VLAIO (The Flemish Innovation and Enterprise Agency) grant we received last year.
Several people have joined our ranks, just in the last couple of weeks.
Frank: On the commercial side, Erik Van der Zee (42) (ex-IBM and ex-OneSpan) and Christian Bartels (25) will make us more visible in the market and give us more opportunities to have meaningful conversations with our customers and prospects. Erik joins us to lead the Sales team for the Netherlands, and we expect him to continue building on the successes that we already have with Dutch customers. Next to that, Andreea Penu (28) strengthens our development team as a Front-end Developer, while Sander Verschueren (28) joins as a Senior Security Consultant.
Talent development is one of your focus areas, isn’t it?
Frank: As a CEO, I see it as my most important task to help our people grow. That’s why we recently introduced ‘ShipIt’ days: every quarter, everyone in the company takes a break from their regular duties and gets a full day to develop an idea they have. TrustBuilder is a place where we cherish the development of talent, and ShipIt Day is a great way for everyone to learn from others, discover their own unsuspected capabilities and impress co-workers and Management. By offering this free time to explore, everyone at TrustBuilder gets the chance to unleash whatever power sits inside them. I’m really excited to see what ideas will be developed there.
Vying for the Startup of the Year Award
Something else to look forward to, is the pitch you will be delivering to the jury of the Computable Awards. What’s up?
Frank: We were quite pleased to see that Computable, one of the leading publications in our market, nominated TrustBuilder for their ‘Startup of the Year Award’ category. So during the Cybersec trade show, you’ll see me on stage, pitching TrustBuilder to the jury of that Award and answering any questions they have on our strategy. I have a lot of respect for the other nominees, but secretly I hope that we will be the winner. It would be a nice reward for all the hard work of everyone at TrustBuilder, and give us even more energy for the future.