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June 1, 2020

Five Questions with… Jérôme Lecat, CEO, Scality

"The next question is where this will take us as humans?"

By CBR Staff Writer

Every Monday morning we fire five questions at a leading C-suite figure in the business technology sector. Today we’re pleased to be joined by Jérôme Lecat, co-founder and CEO of Scality, a global data orchestration and distributed file and object storage specialist founded in 2009.

Jérôme – What’s the Biggest Challenge for your Clients? 

Our customers are in large organisations that need cloud agility and economics. However, these companies cannot simply put everything in a SaaS or Public Cloud. It is a real challenge.

Scality CEO

Scality CEO Jérôme Lecat

For small and medium size business, having a 100 percent SaaS IT is without a doubt the most effective option. However, for larger enterprise, service providers, and government entities, this option is much more complicated, and costly. But doing nothing isn’t the answer either. If enterprises stay with traditional IT suppliers, they lose agility and will be outpaced by their competition.

Cloud is often misunderstood as IaaS (Infrastructure as a Service), but Cloud is much more than that. It is a form of IT, based on software defined distributed systems deployed on industry standard servers, and delivered as a service. It encompasses SaaS, Private Cloud, Public Cloud, Hybrid-Cloud and Multi-Cloud. It is more reliable, more agile and less costly than traditional IT. It is win-win on all fronts.

In a nutshell, we make it easy for these large organisations to benefit from cloud technology and cloud economics, in their data centre. We provide the storage and management of large amounts of data such as documents, backup, logs, photos, videos, medical imaging, Big Data and other large stores.

What Technology Excites you Most? 

I am amazed at how we can pack more and more information in a very tiny cube of silicon. I find it incredible that Moore’s law, the empirical observation that micro-processor density increases every two years, has held that long. It cannot go on forever, but we already see the results of an incredible amount of computing in something as small as a smartphone. The devices around us are getting more and more intelligent, which simply means that they will interact in a way that feels more and more seamless to humans and will be conducting more and more cognitive tasks. All that we observe in digitalisation of the world stems from this.

SC In theory, it frees our mind to go up the Maslow ladder and be more mindful. The dystopian view is that we will become slaves of the machine we create as we become addicted to video games.

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Greatest Success? 

Hundreds of customers, hundreds of millions of people rely on Scality technology in their daily life. Most of them don’t know it. TV viewers, hospital patients, customers of the largest financial organisations, car owners, and citizens all benefit from Scality on a daily basis.

Our software is used by hundreds of TV channels, 40 hospitals and health institutions around the world, 10 of the top 50 financial organisations, auto manufacturers developing autonomous vehicle or testing security of new models, law enforcement agencies monitoring cities, or national libraries safeguarding memories for posterity.

We make a positive impact in the world by improving the reliability, performance and TCO of the services that we power. I am proud of what we achieve every morning.

Worst Failure?

Scality is a ten-year-old company. We develop radical new technology to make the storage, management and search of information always more reliable and cheaper. Through the years we have invented many ground-breaking – and patented – technologies. In this journey, we have also made numerous mistakes, sometimes spending a whole year on the wrong track, and having to erase years of work of our engineering team. Our failures are part of the innovation process. There is no real discovery without the risk of failing. Yet, each one of them is a sorrow for the team who has been working hard, and for me personally.

In Another Life I’d Be…

I started my professional life as a data scientist. In another life I would stay a data scientist and specialise in bringing the power of data to better healthcare. Using the power of computing to create life changing insight is an incredibly creative and rewarding job.

See also: Five Questions with… Pathlight CEO Alex Kvamme

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