Hivelocity COO Steve Escweiler, was recently interviewed by Stefanija Kukunovska at HostAdvice. The original interview can be found at: https://hostadvice.com/blog/hostadvice-speaks-to-steve-eschweiler-of-hivelocity/. The following is a transcript of the interview.
Simplifying hosting solutions are something that a lot of people are looking for today. Mr. Steve Eschweiler from Hivelocity is here with us today, where he will tell us a bit more about his company Hivelocity, the products and services that Hivelocity is offering.
We are very excited to hear his success story and learn more about the hosting industry.
Before this interview, we did a little research and we found out that you are on the market for nearly 20 years now. Can you tell us a bit more about the idea, story, and history behind Hivelocity?
Steve: We founded Hivelocity back in 2002 inside a basement with a single rack of servers. Initially, our solutions targeted web designers who wanted a simple and automated way to offer their customers hosting services in addition to web design. As our offerings gained traction and our customers’ needs grew, we found ourselves getting more and more requests for dedicated servers. As the requests increased we eventually made bare-metal servers our primary offering. Since then we have deployed many tens of thousands of servers in our 31 data centers across the globe.
What were the challenges that you faced when you started the company?
Steve: Geez, there were so many challenges early on. I think the biggest challenge we faced initially was limited capital in what is a very capital-intensive industry. Each time we sold a new server it meant going out and spending a thousand dollars for the hardware, but only getting $100 per month in return. We had many good sales days where we didn’t know whether to celebrate or cry. Credit can be a challenge to get in the early stages of a company so we really had to strategize our funds every day those first few years. With some eventual help from Dell Finance, we were able to get over that hump and thoroughly enjoy the big sales days.
Growing up the company means that you need to have an excellent team who is able to answer to the task given. What are the core values of Hivelocity that drive each team member to success?
Steve: One of our greatest company mantras is, “we only succeed when our customers succeed.” The idea, of course, is that the better our customers do with their businesses, the more solutions they will eventually need from us. Our customers have the greatest opportunity for success when their online infrastructure is up 100% of the time and when technical support is handled swiftly and expertly. Most IaaS providers can do a good job most of the time but doing an exceptional job all the time is where we try to set ourselves apart.
What are the main products and services of Hivelocity?
Steve: Dedicated servers, private cloud, and colocation.
Many customers are not familiar with the hosting terms and solutions that they need. What is your approach to those customers?
Steve: As I said before, we have a vested interest in all of our customers succeed. Part of our approach to helping that cause is to consult with our customers throughout their journey and share with them the 20 years of experience we have to provide IaaS. While a lot of our competitors rely on their site for all communication we believe there is still a lot of value in open dialogue. Every company has a different use case, budget and path forward. We always try to talk with our customers and understand their unique needs and provide a solution that meets those specific needs perfectly.
Can you explain what exactly are the Compute Products that you are offering?
Steve: Our primary offering for the last 15 years or so has been dedicated servers. Over the years and to this day, we continue to perfect the platform our customers use to deploy and manage their dedicated servers with us. Today we offer 31 global edge data center locations where our customers can instantly deploy bare-metal. We have built tools within our myVelocity platform that empower our customers to not only manage their servers but to manage their network and automate how they scale their metal through our public API and Terraform provider.
Technology has changed a lot from 2002 until today. What are the trend and new technologies that are going to show on the market in the following period?
Steve: The latest trend we find ourselves smack dab in the middle of is bare metal cloud. These days people want bare metal for the superior performance and value it provides when compared to the cloud but they want to consume it in an ephemeral cloud-like way. Giving people the ability to instantly deploy dedicated servers, instantly tear down dedicated servers and automate the scale of dedicated servers with code via an API is where we are seeing a tremendous amount of growth.
With the vaccine for Covid-19, we are seeing the end of the pandemic. How this pandemic has affected your business? What is your opinion on the effects on the hosting industry when the pandemic will be over?
Steve: The pandemic led to a huge swell in digital consumption, whether it be apps, streaming, gaming, or something else. Additionally, the pandemic led a lot of businesses to find efficiencies through technology. For the last year, we have seen a roughly 30% lift in our growth due to the increased ways people are using the internet. I don’t see this shift changing anytime soon. Once you find an easier way to accomplish something you usually don’t go back to the old way.
You have been on the market for almost 20 years now. What are the plans for the next 20?
Steve: Over the last few years we have opened over 20 new edge data center locations across the globe. The next 20 years will see us establish many more edge locations as use cases for low latency compute solutions continue to grow.
Finally, is there any advice you would like to share with the hosting industry?
Steve: I would just say that consumers still value customer service and human interaction. So many of us in the industry rely on our tech to be the face of the company. Having great technology is an important thing to have and a lot of resources should be expended on developing your technology, but don’t forget how to communicate with your customers along the way.
Written by: Stefanija Kukunovska