Piros is building on more than 15 years of Red Hat expertise. The company — founded by two Belgian Red Hat pioneers — also acts as the doorway to the Red Hat community at De Cronos Groep, which includes more than 100 Red Hat specialists. Needless to say, they have the answer to all your Red Hat questions!
By 2006, Hermes de Backere had already gained expertise in JBoss middleware at De Cronos Groep. His work helped to achieve the status of Red Hat Premier Business Partner – the first in Belgium and Luxembourg. “Red Hat took over JBoss and turned it into an enterprise product,” says Hermes. “It made JBoss a contender for projects that developers might otherwise have chosen Oracle WebLogic or IBM WebSphere for. However, the difference in the total cost of ownership turned out to be very much in favor of JBoss.”
The idea of working with an underdog like Red Hat fascinated Hermes, and he took on the role of evangelist. “Many developers were already working with the JBoss community product, but often the threshold was too high to make the move to production.” At that time, Martijn Cielen had immersed himself in open source, partly through his role as business developer at the Red Hat distributor. The one Hermes worked with to purchase subscriptions. And so, one plus one equaled three. The two men decided to join forces and started a new company.
While most Red Hat experts choose to focus only on software or infrastructure, Piros offers the entire Red Hat portfolio through 20 of its own specialists. At the same time, the company acts as the voice of the Cronos Red Hat community. In this way, Piros has access to highly specialized Red Hat expertise with more than 100 staff members spread across the group.
Time to market
“The Red Hat landscape has changed dramatically over the past 15 years. Companies are now very consciously opting for enterprise open source,” explains Martijn. “There’s much less discussion about the issue of community versus enterprise open source.” The fact that the landscape has changed is also clear from the fact that Red Hat is now owned by IBM. This has only further underlined Red Hat’s position as a full-fledged and secure enterprise product.
The total cost of ownership — initially often an important driver for open source — has recently become less important. “Companies prefer to view a project in terms of ROI,” Martijn continues. “And they prefer to evaluate open source through the prism of what the software can offer in terms of time to market. Being able to switch faster at a lower cost, that’s what it’s all about.”
Red Hat incubator
Of course, Piros continues to closely follow market developments. “In the coming years, we’ll continue to invest in further developing our expertise in open source technology and in different sectors,” says Hermes. “We want to further strengthen the Red Hat community within De Cronos Groep and take on the role of incubator even more. We’re always open to new ideas and initiatives.”
Piros is also working on offering its solutions through managed services. “We’re doing everything we can to stay the most complete Red Hat partner,” concludes Martijn. “We’re already a Red Hat Certified Cloud and Service Provider, and we act as an exam center where professionals can obtain a Red Hat certificate.” But Piros wants to go even further. “It’s our ambition to become a Gold or Diamond Partner,” says Hermes with a wink. “Except those categories don’t officially exist…yet.”
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