NewBay, Irish Mobile Software Company, Opens U.S. Headquarters in Seattle, Looks to Hire 100 People (and Take On Real, Motricity)
There’s a new mobile company in town—Dublin, Ireland-based NewBay Software, which is celebrating the opening of its new U.S. headquarters in Seattle today. The firm says it chose Seattle for its Americas headquarters because of the unique mobile and technological ecosystem here in the Pacific Northwest.
NewBay, founded in 2002, sits in a tech sector reminiscent of ventures like Mozy and Ontela (now Photobucket)—except the technology is geared more toward the service provider than the consumer. The company provides social networking, digital media, and cloud-based services to wireless service providers around the world. Some of its biggest clients include Alltel, Telstra, Orange, LG, and, in the U.S., AT&T, and T-Mobile. Its primary service—called LifeCache—gives mobile operators a way to offer consumers the ability to create, view, store, and share rich media across a number of digital devices.
Newbay, which currently has 250 employees spread across the U.S., Ireland, England, Germany, and Korea, says the Seattle office is part of the company’s international expansion plans. According to senior vice president and general manager of the Americas, Timo Bauer, the company has more than doubled its U.S. staff over the last year—to 48—and plans to aggressively hire an additional 100 employees over the next 12 months in Seattle.
Yesterday I caught up with Bauer, who talked about the company’s plans, and its decision to expand and bring 100 new mobile jobs to Seattle. Bauer is excited to be in Seattle for both business and personal reasons. “Given the depth of tech talent and innovation here, it will also be a great place to spearhead NewBay’s continued growth and success,” he said, adding, “I am from Northern Germany, and the weather is much worse over there, so I am quite happy with Seattle.”
Here are the highlights of our e-mail interview, edited for length and clarity:
Xconomy: What is the idea behind NewBay’s technology?
Timo Bauer: NewBay provides a cloud-based user content ecosystem to service providers and OEMs [original equipment manufacturers]. Our white-label platform is called LifeCache, and it enables our customers to offer user content solutions including social networking, digital vaults, network address books, notifications and messaging services. [Editor’s Note: Basically NewBay sells technology to wireless carriers that allow their customers to interact with digital media across devices, such as from mobile phone to desktop computer.]
We are enabling our customers to properly compete and partner with the likes of Google, Facebook, and Apple.
We have achieved great traction to date with our LifeCache platform and have four of the five top operators in the U.S. and Europe—as well as four of the top five global OEMs—using the technology today.
We believe that service providers—specifically the operators—play a crucial role in powering their subscribers’ digital lifestyle. Our mission is to help our customers to enable their subscribers with a rich digital lifestyle experience based on our LifeCache platform.
X: How does NewBay’s technology compare to that of related companies like Mozy and Ontela/Photobucket?
TB: EMC/Mozy and now Ontela/Photobucket are services that provide only very specific use cases directly to the consumer. NewBay focuses 100 percent on providing a highly scalable technology platform to our operator- and device manufacturer-customers. We allow them to offer a wide range of standalone or bundled digital lifestyle services to their subscribers.
X: Who are your major competitors, and how do you differ from them?
TB: There are a variety of service providers that either provide point solutions to operators and OEMs or directly to consumers, but the LifeCache platform differs in its ability to provide services and capabilities across the spectrum of digital lifestyle services. This broad group includes Google, Apple, Mozy, Dropbox, Seven, Real Networks, Motricity and OnMobile.
X: NewBay already has offices in California—why did the company decide to make Seattle its U.S. headquarters?
TB: NewBay originally established its U.S. presence in Bellevue, Washington, in 2005 to provide local support for T-Mobile USA, while identifying new business opportunities to grow market share. Seattle is the ‘mobile Silicon Valley,’ which made it the perfect location for our new Americas headquarters. As we continue to grow our customer base, we will focus on recruiting new talent across multiple disciplines in Seattle including business development, marketing, finance, engineering, operations and professional services.
X: Does the new U.S. headquarters coincide with a grander international expansion plan?
TB: NewBay already has a large customer presence in Europe and earlier this year we announced our first Asia-Pacific customer, with Telstra’s Tribe service supported by our Social Network Gateway (SNG).
Seattle is the HQ for the Americas, and NewBay is planning a more aggressive push into the CALA [Caribbean and the Latin American] region in 2011.
Our OEM (connected devices) business is also supported out of the Seattle office. Earlier this year we announced our first OEM customer—LG, which uses our social network service for many of their phones.
X: You have said NewBay has aggressive hiring plans for Seattle this year and in 2011. How many do you expect to hire in the Seattle office, and for what positions?
TB: We plan to hire an additional 100 employees over the next 12 months. We will be hiring across multiple disciplines, including: business development, marketing, finance, engineering, operations and professional services. Also, we plan to hire local support in the CALA region in 2011. Most recently, we appointed our new vice president of global marketing in Seattle, Steve French.
X: How does NewBay fit within the community of cloud-based software/digital media companies, both globally and in the Seattle area?
TB: We are the global leader in providing user-content ecosystems to service providers. Today this might still be considered to be a niche, but moving forward local companies like Real and Motricity as well as major global corporations will try to compete with us in this space.