Former integrator sets sights on presentation software business
Colin Doe talks about his life “after security” but his latest role with a Toronto software company is in some ways reconnecting him with the industry.
Doe was the president and CEO of systems integration firm Veridin Systems Canada for 15 years. Veridin was acquired by Avante Logixx in 2018 and Doe joined Vizetto, a maker of digital workspace and presentation software, a year later as the company’s COO (chief operating officer or as Doe prefers, chief optimism officer).
Vizetto’s platform, Reactiv Suite, is designed to “make your meetings memorable,” according to the company tagline. First developed as a software solution for interactive whiteboards, the company pivoted at the start of the pandemic and created a laptop version as well, making it easier for remote workers to adopt.
Reactiv Suite runs on top of popular video conferencing software, like Zoom or Microsoft Teams, but allows for what Doe says is an advanced level of interaction where sharing of documentation or multimedia (everything from building floorplans to education tools) is at a premium and the presenter remains central to the meeting.
“Any platform where you can share a screen, we can use,” says Doe. “That’s what our goal is — to engage people back into a meeting, make the meetings memorable and give the presenter presence…. We didn’t need to re-invent the wheel… we just had to put the rubber on the wheel, which is what we do.”
The Reactiv platform utilizes existing video communication tools but anything shared over Reactiv never leaves the user’s own network, says Doe, adding an extra layer of security assurance.
Meeting the market
Vizetto has a North American distribution partnership with Synnex, as well as global channel partners in Ricoh Canada, Optoma and Newline Interactive, which are all makers of display technology. Vizetto’s product suite officially launched this year and has been tested by a number of end users across several markets, including universities and doctor’s offices, as well as a few security companies.
“We spent most of 2020 beta testing with some key clients,” Doe explains. “We have about 1,800 users using the software. That fed back a lot of information to us. We fixed a lot of bugs and built a whole quality assurance team… and we’ve refined the product with features that clients asked for.”
Doe says a number of security companies have seen the product in demonstrations “and they’ve all agreed that their sales teams benefit from things like this.”
Doe says he’s well positioned to understand the requirements of security service providers, having been in that business himself for almost 30 years. In fact, any company that integrates technology — like security, IT, A/V or any mix therein — will often share common challenges and opportunities when it comes to meeting customer needs.
“I know what the pain points are from interacting with clients,” he says. The software company he works for now, while in many ways different from Doe’s previous professional life, also follows a recurring monthly revenue (RMR) model, which is one he knows well.
The pandemic has shone a spotlight on remote collaboration tools — and many vocations seem destined to include a remote component well into the future. “Prior to the pandemic, our 10-year plans became one-year plans. We accelerated. We pivoted from our original thought,” says Doe, who adds that the term “collaboration” is sometimes misapplied and over-used.
“Everyone talks about collaboration all the time, but nobody has a good definition of what that is,” he says.
“We said right from the beginning, we’re not a collaboration tool, we’re a presentation tool, period…. We elevate your presence and we engage your audience. We’ve found ways within our software that we can do those things really well.”
The long-term goal for Vizetto, says Doe, is to reach 100 million Reactiv Suite users by 2028.