Cube52 was founded by data centre veterans Matthew Munson (left) and Robin Ellis in February 2014, and provides white-label cloud services to the IT channel.
Partner companies can build branded applications and services on top of Cube52's platform, making use of infrastructure that can scale from private dedicated clouds to more flexible public deployments.
The company is based in Reading and has grown to 25 employees.
We put Munson under the startup spotlight to find out more about Cube52
Why did you set up Cube52?
Robin and I identified a gap in the market. The way organisations are purchasing their IT is changing, with a move from ownership towards software and services on demand.
Cube52's technology is centred on a self-service cloud portal that provides a single point of access, configuration and control 24/7 from which resellers can focus on the workloads, applications and services that will drive their business forward.
Tell us how you got Cube52 off the ground.
We reinvested £3m from the sale of BlueSquare Data, the data centre-based provider of colocation services which we sold in 2010, and spent the last two years developing Cube52.
We have invested heavily in technology innovation to offer the partner community an extra layer of credibility for them to add value to their client base and expand their cloud offerings.
What technology do you use?
I use a Nokia 9, and an iPad. To be honest they are the only two pieces of smart technology that I use.
For coding language and analytics, I use Dot Net and Google Analytics. When it comes to cloud platforms, that's incorporated in what we do at Cube52.
What level of funding have you received so far?
Robin and I reinvested £3m from the sale of BlueSquare Data into setting up Cube52, therefore we are in a good position and require no additional funding.
What challenges have you encountered to date?
In addition to the usual startup challenges every new business faces, Cube52 has invested heavily in technology. The key to our success will be based on getting the right partners on board and white labelling the Cube52 platform.
The other challenge that springs to mind is having the right staff. I mean finding people with the right level of expertise and knowledge. There are always plenty of technical challenges with the Cube52 platform, but with the right team we always overcome them.
What's been the biggest highlight of your business to date?
Having key partners understand the proposition, and coming on board so early, has been vital. In the first quarter of 2015, four key partners came on board which has been crucial for the business.
What does your company do to relax or have fun after a busy day?
We usually end up at the local pub for some drinks, especially in sunny weather.
What did you do before starting Cube52?
I began my career in internet hosting as a teenager with a few hundred data servers stored in my parents' garage in Burnham.
What began as a bit of a hobby to help my mother give a web presence to the local Neighbourhood Watch scheme quickly grew into a business with promise, called PoundHost.
In 2006, I teamed up with Robin Ellis to create BlueSquare Data, a group of data management companies which included PoundHost as part of its hosting division.
BlueSquare Data gained a name for itself as one of the primary data centre providers in the UK, resulting in a multi-million acquisition by an Italian blue chip company in 2010.
What are your favourite and worst things about running your own startup?
Two of the best things about running a startup is being your own boss and being able to bring an idea to life.
The worst thing is the level of stress that comes with running your own startup. You feel like you are spinning many plates at once, either to do with finance or staff issues. You constantly need to be on the ball with everything that is happening within your business.
If you could emulate the success of another startup which would it be?
I would merge my previous company BlueSquare Data with Pulsant. We had a really good time when we were running the company and had a really good group of people.
It was very hard work, but we really enjoyed ourselves. When we merged with Pulsant, the rewards that came with that were quite nice as well! It was a win-win situation and an opportunity to work with great people and great technology.
Do you work remotely, in a shared environment or have your own office space?
Cube52 has its own office space. However, we are always on the move, such as meeting new customers, so a lot of my time is working remotely.
Coffee shop of choice?
I don't drink coffee. I'm a tea drinker. However, I do sometimes pop into Starbucks.
Beverage of choice?
It depends on the time of day. In the morning I'll have tea, by the afternoon I'll drink Coke and then in the evening a glass of red wine.
There is a really nice bar in Henley on Thames called Little Angel.
I'm always travelling and on the move, so I'm usually looking at Google Maps to see where I am.
Do you benefit from startup communities and related networking?
When I started my first company, PoundHost, in 2001 there wasn't the startup community that there is now. My previous company, nideo, used to organise a lot of breakfast meetings, which included workshops for anyone who wanted to learn about web hosting.
So, I think startup communities are really beneficial and I wish they had been around to guide me when I was starting my first business over 10 years ago.
If you want to take part in the V3 Startup Spotlight contact Roland Moore-Colyer.
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