Qumulo Adds New CEO to Go with New Functionality for HPE

Former Isilon CEO Bill Richter replaces co-founder Peter Godman, who served as CEO for a while and now slides over to the chief technical officer job.

Scale-out network-attached storage maker Qumulo, whose name in Latin means "stack," has appointed EMC Isilon veteran Bill Richter as its new chief executive officer.

Richter replaces co-founder Peter Godman, who served as CEO for a while and now slides over to the chief technical officer job while remaining on the company's board of directors.

The addition of Richter, officially announced Nov. 29, augments an already well-experienced leadership team at Qumulo, which includes storage and business experts from Amazon Web Services, CA, Dell, EMC, Google and Microsoft. It also follows last month's appointment of Eric Scollard as vice president of worldwide sales.

"I've been working with Bill and getting his advice for a long time, and we're glad we now have him," Godman told eWEEK. "Qumulo is building a product for the ages,something that's going to help people manage enormous amounts of data at geographic scale, and it's a big undertaking. This next stage called for the right leader, and I'm delighted he accepted."

'First Data-Aware, Scale-Out' NAS

Qumulo makes what it boldly calls "the world's first data-aware, scale-out" network-attached enterprise storage system—one that has data analytics built right into it. After less than two years, Qumulo already has more than 100 paying enterprise customers (compared to about 50 last April) and deploys more than 40PB of capacity. Deployments start as small about 100TB and run up to footprints as large as 4PB.

The Seattle-based company spent three full years in product development. The first product, Qumulo Core, was designed by the inventors of scale-out NAS to store and manage billions—even trillions—of files.

"There's a market of about $8 billion each year for customers running applications that require this type of solution," Richter told eWEEK. "Today, those customers have very, very limited choices. They're basically forced to buy solutions that were written 15 or 20 years ago by legacy vendors.

"What Pete did was say, when he founded Qumulo in 2012: 'We're going to give those customers something new, and it will be different in three ways: first, cloud-centric; second, completely software-defined; and third, it's not just going to help store data, it's going to help them manage and understand it.'"

Early on, Qumulo's founding team recognized an opportunity to disrupt legacy storage by taking a software centric approach to solving customers' significant challenges in storing and managing large scale unstructured data environments. Since the company's inception, customers and bookings have doubled year over year, Richter said.

New CEO a 20-Year Industry Veteran

Richter has 20 years of leadership experience in the technology industry. Prior to joining Qumulo, Richter served as a partner at Madrona Venture Group, where he helped identify new investments and provided strategic and operational advice to portfolio companies. Prior to that, he was president of the Isilon Storage Division of EMC, where he grew the business to $1.5 billion in annual sales in 2014.

Richter also served as COO of EMC's $4 billion Midrange Storage business. He was Isilon's public company CFO from 2007 through the $2.5 billion sale to EMC in 2010. Earlier in his career, Richter held management and leadership roles at Amazon and PwC.
Last month, Qumulo introduced Qumulo Core 2.5 and announced the availability of Qumulo Core on Hewlett-Packard Enterprise (HPE) Apollo servers, providing enterprises in media and entertainment, life and earth sciences, telecommunications, cable, automotive and R&D organizations new choice and flexibility for storing and managing billions of files and objects.

Chris Preimesberger

Chris Preimesberger

Chris Preimesberger is Editor of Features & Analysis at eWEEK, responsible in part for the publication's coverage areas. In his 10 years and more than 3,500 stories at eWEEK, he has distinguished...