1. The Summerbreeze Metal Festival
In August 2013, Senne Vaeyens en Bart Van Hecke attended the Summerbreeze festival in Dinkelsbühl, Germany. Being long-time friends and already active in the wonderful world of Information Technology for several years, they discussed the possibility of starting a company together. After a long night of heavy music and lots of beers, the foundation of Cloudar was laid…
2. Cloudar started as a Cloud Broker
Cloudar was started as a Cloud Broker company, acting as a trusted advisor for customers and providing a single point of contact regardless of the cloud technology the customers were using. After evaluating this setup for a few months, Senne & Bart noticed that real focus was missing. They decided that it would be better to become great at only one thing than to be mediocre at several. As Amazon Web Services (AWS) was already the preferred platform for several projects, it was decided that Cloudar would only focus on AWS and become a trustworthy AWS partner.
Fun fact: The name Cloudar originates from the combination of the word “Cloud” and “Radar”; When the company started as a cloud broker, we would be the ‘radar’ for our customers to find the best cloud provider that would suit their needs. Nowadays Cloudar stands for “Cloud Architects”, but the radar remained in the company logo…
3. Cloudar joined the Cronos Group in October 2014
To maintain focus on AWS, it became clear that we needed to surround ourselves with experts in other areas of the IT spectrum. As the Cronos Group is an incubator that exists of multiple independent companies with specific expertise, the choice of joining this group was a no-brainer.
4. First hire in January 2015
In January 2015, Ben Bridts joined the company and is up to present day the go-to AWS expert of the company. Ben has in-depth AWS knowledge, helps defining Cloudar’s technical strategy and is an official AWS Ambassador (https://www.ambassador-lounge.com/ambassadors/ben-bridts/). Hook him up if you have questions about AWS (@benbridts)
5. In April 2015, Cloudar joins Xplore Group
The Cronos Group is divided into several clusters; some clusters specialize in ‘traditional IT services’, while others have a focus in entirely other areas. Xplore Group is one of these clusters and has a clear focus on E-commerce, Data Science, Cloud Native Development, IoT, Machine Learning, …
As Cloudar prefers to talk with the business directly, while maintaining a good relationship with developers as well, the Xplore Group cluster seemed a good fit.
Together with multiple Xplore Group companies, Cloudar is now able to execute large enterprise projects with a scope that extends the expertise of AWS.
6. Some numbers (August 2020)
- Current headcount: 32 (and growing)
- Customer base: >100
- Monthly AWS Spent: > $1M
- Total of AWS Certifications: >100
- AWS programs & competencies:
– Premier Consulting Partner
– Solution Provider
– Public Sector Partner
– Well-Architected Partner
– Immersion Day Partner
– Managed Service Provider Partner
– Migration Competency
– DevOps Competency
– Government Competency
– Lambda Service Delivery
It goes without saying that great things can only be achieved if you surround yourself with the right partners…
While AWS remains our focus, you need partners to be able to deliver the full picture to your customers. Some solid partnerships we established throughout the years are:
- CloudCheckr: Mainly used for cost optimization and providing best practices to our customers
- VMware: to help us supporting VMC on AWS
- Trend Micro: For compliance reasons and securing AWS environments
- N2WS: for backup and disaster recovery purposes
- Site 24×7: for monitoring & alerting
- The Cronos Group & Xplore Group: for delivering expertise in areas other than AWS
8. Why would you engage us?
When you decide to work with us, you’ll be working with a team of AWS Certified Professionals that have the highest level of demonstrated expertise and skills using the AWS Cloud:
- We can do the heavy lifting for you
- We’ll make sure you only pay what you need
- We can lower the cost of your ‘migration bubble’
- We can assist in accelerating your projects, so you’ll be able to reach your deadlines
- We can educate your staff
- We can take care of your AWS environment 24/7
We apply the “Common Sense Framework” (CSF) on a daily basis.
Although we are ISO/IEC 27001 certified for Information Security to comply with the highest security standards and combine several IT methodologies (ITIL, Agile, DevOps, Prince 2,…), the most important framework we use is CSF. CSF is and always will be the backbone of Cloudar. Every person, situation, customer or project is different, so we need to be able to adapt quickly and apply common sense wherever we can. Common sense enables us to be very flexible and allows us to anticipate very fast in every situation.
CSF is here to stay!
Note: In the Flemish part of Belgium, CSF is also known as “Gezond Boerenverstand”
10. The future
Well, that’s a tricky one…
In this ever-changing world, who knows what the future might bring? It has been our goal from day one to become one of the leading AWS partners in the EMEA region, and I think we can say that we did a good job so far.
For the following years, we’ll keep on growing as a company, expand our customer base and explore new areas, just as we always did before. Now is not the time to lay back and think the journey is finished. In fact, I believe our journey has only begun; with so much opportunities in front of us, it’s time to ramp things up a gear!
To quote Mario Andretti; “If everything seems under control, you’re not going fast enough…”