Written by Ralph Gammon, originally published on Document Imaging Report

When Ephesoft took on $15 million in Series A funding this summer, one of the goals was to accelerate the company’s growth. “[The venture firm we are partnering with] specializes in taking companies with revenue in the low eight figures revenue range and growing them to nine figures,” said then-CEO Don Field. “That’s exactly where we want to go.”

As you probably know, Field has since retired and been replaced as CEO by Founder and CTO Ike Kavas. To replace Field, who also served as Ephesoft’s de facto head of sales, Kavas has brought in Russ Hubbard as Chief Revenue Officer. In his past jobs at ISVs Roadnet Technologies, OpenText, and SafeNet, Hubbard has gained plenty of experience with high growth.

“Throughout my career, I’ve been fortunate that I’ve been put in situations where there has been tremendous opportunity for growth,” Hubbard told DIR. “In some cases, it has been due to an underperforming team, and in some cases it has been due to circumstances beyond their control, like a macroeconomic situation. With Ephesoft, I feel like we’re in a good situation because the foundation is in place. I think we have a tremendous opportunity to expand quickly.”

Hubbard addressed opportunities related to each of Ephesoft’s major product lines—its Transact document capture technology, as well as its Insight technology for analyzing document content. “We see a very broad and wide market for Transact,” he said. “As much as everybody talks about how mature the capture space is, we keep discovering new use cases and applications. I’ll compare it to the Gold Rush. I think a lot of the early gold was pretty easily discovered, but to find the rest of it required a little more work and mining, and I think we are at that stage now with capture.

While I think there are still opportunities in areas like mortgage processing, A/P, and even transcript processing, there are also new markets emerging in a number of non-traditional use cases. It’s just a process of whittling down the potential opportunities and then being surgical about where you attack and place your bets.”

While Transact has been available since the company was founded in 2010, Insight was only introduced over the past couple years and its target market is not as well defined. “Insight is on the beginning of its journey and there is a lot more ahead as it matures,” said Hubbard. “We currently have a footprint in the federal government and we are also looking to expand into a few commercial beta sites.”

Although the two products are in different stages of their lifecycles, there is enough in common that the same salesforce is selling both. “Before my arrival, we had already taken the step of converging the sales teams,” said Hubbard. “We are seeing the opportunities coming together.”

Hubbard is developing a mix of direct and channel sales. Long-time industry executive David Talarico is the VP, Channel Sales, for the Americas. “We have built a direct team focused on targeted, named accounts,” said Hubbard. “But, every large customer has multiple touch points, so it’s important for us to go to market with a partner mentality. Some of these are pure technology partners where we go in and co-sell and others are through reseller arrangements. The avenue we choose to go is really going to depend on the circumstances of a given market and what makes the most sense.”

Transact has always been sold through the channel and Ephesoft is now introducing Insight to some potential resellers as well. “We’re not going to take a shotgun approach with Insight,” said Hubbard. “It will be a little more sniper-like, targeting partners with the right skill sets and ability to take Insight to market.”

Ephesoft also plans to accelerate its international efforts. “Global expansion is a big focus,” Hubbard said. “For a relatively young company, Ephesoft has a strong presence internationally and we want to bring that to maturity. We think there is tremendous growth opportunity outside the U.S. Our early focus will be on Europe and Asia.”

Last year, Ephesoft hired former Kofax sales executive Andrew Rootes to run its Asia-Pac operations. Former NSi executive Enno Lückel has been VP of Sales in EMEA since late 2015.

SaaS Experience

In his most recent position at Roadnet, Hubbard is credited with “driving change towards SaaS market leadership from an on-premises legacy.” We asked if he felt Ephesoft, which has the infrastructure to sell SaaS but has mostly had on-premises implementations to date, was in a good position to make a similar transition. “SaaS adoption is really driven by the market you serve,” he said. “If you go back eight or nine years, many customers were not interested in the cloud because they didn’t trust its security or reliability. Because of multiple factors, we are now seeing SaaS become much more mainstream as deployment models are migrating toward the cloud. We expect to ride that trend, but we are also prepared to go on premises. Our ultimate goal is to capture market share.”

Increasing Sales Staff

Hubbard concluded that he feels he has a great opportunity at Ephesoft. “The great thing is that there isn’t really anything to fix,” he said. “I’m not walking into a situation full of problems. My job is more about accelerating growth and expanding the business. Of course, we can’t just will that to happen. We have to make sure we have the right system and structure in place.

“Part of that will involve increasing our human capital. We are looking for a mix of characteristics in the people we hire. Market familiarity is certainly a relevant component.

More than that though we are looking for people who know how to generate value for our customers and partners. We are not going to be successful alone. Our software has to provide value, and our salespeople have to be able to articulate what it can do for our customers’ businesses.”