Radhik Colombage, Vice President of Corporate Marketing at WSO2, reflects on the tech company’s emergence as a global leader in API management, integration, and customer identity and access management (CIAM). He also talks about highlights from 2022; why participating in high-profile, global tech summits is important; and what makes WSO2 special.
Can you tell us a little about WSO2’s journey so far?
Seventeen years ago, Sanjiva founded WSO2 with an audacious mission: to build the world’s best open-source software company out of Sri Lanka. His belief in Sri Lanka’s ability to continuously produce world-class talent is a driving force behind what we do today. Our journey has been a truly humbling experience. From a Sri Lankan perspective, we’re easily the country’s largest software company, employing close to 900 people here. Today, we help nearly 800 global enterprises—including some of the world’s largest enterprises, top universities, and governments—in over 90 countries deliver great digital experiences for their customers. Together, we execute in excess of 60 trillion transactions and manage over 1 billion identities every single year.
Our focus for this year was to become a cloud-first company and help enterprises create awesome digital experiences quickly, easily, and securely. And we’re delivering on that mission with our new Choreo, Asgardeo, and WSO2 Private CIAM Cloud solutions, which significantly lower the skills, time, and cost barriers to delivering new and secure digital experiences.
They’re absolute game-changers.
WSO2 had another successful year in 2022, with ARR projected to come in at over 30% YoY. We also expanded our global partner list to over 200, received recognition from leading analysts like KuppingerCole and Forrester, and completed our Series E growth funding round with a $93 million dollar investment from Goldman Sachs and Info Edge.
What are some of the challenges confronting global businesses, including local ones, that WSO2 is helping to overcome?
Post-pandemic, businesses were booming with soaring investments and recruitment to match, but all that changed in 2022 as external and internal factors took their toll. The outlook for 2023 is gloomy, and we’ve recently seen that even global tech giants like Twitter, Salesforce, and Meta are streamlining operations. Enterprises are now looking at ways to minimize the cost impact of resources, become operationally efficient, and maximize existing capabilities. It’s almost overwhelming thinking about the scale of the challenge. But for WSO2, the beauty is that our products are tailor-made to help organizations overcome these very challenges.
Businesses must use digital initiatives to evolve into more efficient enterprises to survive and thrive during these trying times. At WSO2, our technologies are at the heart of digital transformation. This cannot happen without APIs, integration, and CIAM. These technologies are the gateway to delivering great digital experiences, and the tools developed by WSO2 simplify digital transformation and make it a smoother, faster, and more effective process.
WSO2 has emerged as a global thought leader, actively participating in major conferences like the global Gartner Summits, GITEX (Dubai), KubeCon + CloudNativeCon (North America), and Identity Week (UK). What is the significance of this?
For a company founded in Sri Lanka to appear at these events and stand side by side with industry giants like Microsoft, Google, and Intel is an impressive feat because it demonstrates the company’s, and our people’s, standing within the industry. In the past year alone, we’ve presented at over 100 events, speaking to thousands of people on diverse platforms and stages. That is a massive accomplishment, showing how much we’ve grown as a company over the past two decades.
Apart from the affirmation and validation of our work and the impact it has, these global conferences also showcase WSO2 and its newest innovations directly to the most tech-savvy audiences, creating new opportunities for the company and the country to emerge as thought leaders and innovators within the tech industry.
These events attract thousands of people—the who’s who, the movers and shakers, and thought leaders of new-age industries. The recently concluded Gartner IT Symposiums in Europe and North America, for example, had a combined audience of 17,000 attendees. These conferences help us reach a wider audience to generate new business opportunities and engage with potential investors and other software vendors. Those vendors and investors offer the potential for strategic partnerships that will help expand the impact of our products and grow WSO2’s global footprint more effectively and faster.