30 Best Small Companies To Watch 2018

An Interview with Ezhilarasan Natarajan, CoreStack Founder and CEO: ‘We Empower Enterprises to Accelerate Innovation through Frictionless Consumption of Cloud Services and Tools across Providers’


“Being in the loop with customers helps us learn more about their active issues and find relevant solutions to resolve them.”

Cloud has completely changed the way enterprises innovate and deliver services. However, It not just a technological change. The move to Cloud, tied with adopting Agile IT methodologies, means massive organisational changes in people, processes, and policies. While there are many benefits to Cloud all these changes inherently add a layer of complexity and increased risk. This is forcing enterprises to continually balance the risks versus the rewards of Cloud. We believe in eliminating that need to choose. CoreStack was created to empower enterprises to leverage all the benefits of Cloud, while removing the complexities and inherent risks.

CoreStack is a Next Generation Multi Cloud Service Governance Platform architected to accelerate adoption, optimize consumption & cost, while minimizing risk. Our unique Cloud-as-Code approach allows us to Automate the 4 C’s (CloudOps, Compliance, Cost, & Consumption) of Cloud Governance while leveraging industry best practices and tools.

CoreStack was set up in 2016 and is based in Bellevue, Washington.

Ezhilarasan ‘Ez’ Natarajan, CoreStackFounder/CEO, spoke exclusively to The Silicon Review. Below is an excerpt.

What’s the difference between having a business and having a brand?

Echoing the sentiments of a well-known brand strategist, a business becomes a brand when it transcends its category of origin. A business is an organization that markets or produces products or services. But in a brand, there is an infusion of a personality. When a business takes up a core idea of philosophy and infuses it in all its activities, and consistently delivers products/services of high quality, it becomes a brand.

Why was the company set up? And how did you expand your company and its offerings over the years?

As the businesses are increasingly shifting to the cloud, companies often find themselves managing a wide-range of management products, each on its own providing silo solution and with its own set of quirks.

Managing and consuming cloud services can be inefficient without a standardized system that is also dynamic in nature to ensure enterprises are on top of all their inventory at any given time. We started working on the idea of ‘Cloud as Code’™ as early as 2014. However, it took us two years to polish the concept and structure it into a product that would dramatically cut cloud costs and help companies auto-govern their cloud infrastructure and services more effectively. After successful beta testing with customers, in 2016, CoreStack was formed as the flagship product addressing cloud governance issues spread across single or multiple cloud from consumption, cloudops, cost and compliance perspective.

How successful was your first project roll on? Share the experience.

We would be wrong if we say the rollout was hugely successful. We did face multiple challenges as it was the time to deploy and test CoreStack in a live environment. Our customers’ environment was quite different than what we initially envisaged. We understood the constraints and tweaked CoreStack to ensure it works as per the design and customer needs. 

There is nothing more important for a successful small business than a well-defined mission and vision statements. Can you explain your M&V statements in brief?

Our mission is to empower enterprises to accelerate innovation through frictionless consumption of cloud services and tools across providers. We believe that for enterprises to innovate faster, they need to leverage the best of breed cloud technologies that are interoperable, provide rich feature sets, and enforce governance. With multiple cloud providers (AWS, Azure, Google, Oracle, IBM, etc.) offering great technologies, it is hard for enterprises to pick one over the other. No one-size-fits-all cloud strategy works. By removing barriers for enterprises to learn, adopt, consume and optimize various cloud technologies, we will help accelerate pace of their innovation.

What are the factors that help your company to compete on a global platform?

As a young organization, it is often difficult to prove our potential to prospects, as they usually have stringent vendor requirements. However, our partnership with Microsoft has put us on the global map. With Microsoft standing by our side and vouching for our capabilities by being the Co-Sell Partner, we have greater visibility and trust. In fact, this partnership recently helped us prove our capabilities and win a contract with one of the top financial services company.

“Earning trust and respect of consumers is through consistent focus on delivering high quality in all of our actions.” How do you interpret this statement?

We believe it’s every business’ responsibility to constantly deliver high-quality solutions to customers. We exist to resolve a need of the customer and therefore we must ensure that quality is embedded in all our actions – be it product design and development or providing after-sales support.

Moreover, we conduct feedback sessions with our clients and also gain market insights to see what ground level problems are faced by businesses when adopting and managing cloud infrastructure. Being in the loop with customers helps us learn more about their active issues and find relevant solutions to resolve them.

How does your company contribute to the competitive global IT platform at large?

Our membership and partner echo system provide us with the ability to contribute to the global platforms at large. Our depth of partnership with Microsoft, Membership associations with Educause, Social give back contributions through AppConnectNW for WTIA, CoreStack’s platform integration with Git, Offering CoreStack CLaaS technology for greater impacting initiatives like Nasscom FutureSkills through EdCast are some of the mentionable ones.

Do you have any new products ready to be launched?

We have two variants of CoreStack offering. CoreStack Enterprise; caters to large enterprises in their Digital Transformation journey to Cloud and CoreStack CLaaS; empowers Education and Learning domain customers to leverage Cloud technologies effectively and efficiently on-demand across providers. We are working on delivering unique values for Healthcare and Financial Services domain customers that incentivizes them to use CoreStack.

As a question on sustainability, where do you see your company a couple of years from now?

We truly believe that our core values of Customer Focus, Innovation and being Nimble will enable the company to become bigger, better and faster in the next few years. We want to be recognized as a new order of reference brand for Value creation, ROI and Liberty of choice by our customers.

Ezhilarasan ‘Ez’ Natarajan: A Dynamic Leader

Ezhilarasan ‘Ez’ Natarajan,founder, is the Chief Executive Officer of CoreStack. With around 20 years of experience in the IT industry, Ez is a technology agnostic cloud expert and an entrepreneur. He is accomplished in architecting and delivering complex, sophisticated and revenue-generating business solutions that satisfy diverse technology requirements across industry segments.

Ez earned his Bachelor’s in Computer Science Engineering from India and a Master’s degree in Business Administration from the US.

“With Microsoft standing by our side and vouching for our capabilities by being the Co-Sell Partner, we have greater visibility and trust.”