Web Hosting Interview - ClickStrat January 2005

Web Hosting Interview - ClickStrat January 2005

Asher Saeed and James Shanks, Co-Founders of Reyox.net

Hostsearch's exclusive interview with Asher Saeed and James Shanks, Co-Founders of Reyox.net. Both of them share with us how they lead Reyox.net to become one of the leading companies in web hosting industry.

  • HOSTSEARCH: Could you please briefly tell us about yourself and your role for Reyox.net?
    ASHER AND JAMES: Asher: I'm the co-founder and Chief Solutions Architect of Reyox, with over five years of experience in the industry. I started hosting way back in 2000 and dealt with IT/networking firms before I started my own ventures. I started a Bachelors Degree in Computer Sciences but decided a management degree would be better considering I already had learnt all that I would have learnt through a Computer Sciences Degree. I am currently completing my double bachelors in management sciences (BBA and B.COM) after which I will begin my masters and then Ph.D.

    James: I'm the co-founder and Chief Project Director of Reyox with over three years experience in the hosting industry.  I am also researching distributed computing with a bias towards the benefits of distributed computing in a mission critical hosting environment. Asher and I are doing independent research with our closest programmers and researchers in this field.
  • HOSTSEARCH: Could you please share with us when was Reyox.net found? How did the company get started? What was inspiration for doing web hosting business?

    ASHER AND JAMES: Asher: I come from a long line of hosting companies and am no new face to the industry. The same applies to James, we go a long way back. Reyox is our 'perfect venture put together with 8 years of combined experience that we have. After all we have learned through our past ventures, we decided it was time to make the perfect hosting company. So we combined all that to make a giant venture called Reyox. We started Reyox back in mid 2002.
  • HOSTSEARCH: What is the meaning of "Reyox"? Is there any significance behind the name of your company?
    ASHER AND JAMES: James: It's actually quite funny how the Reyox name was created.  Asher and I typically think intensively on what name appeals to people most and best of all, uniquely.  Reyox was a name inspired by accident.  One day we were chatting about Ox and started calling our systems 'boxen' and anything relative to that ended up being the surname of 'oxen'.  One of our servers crashed while we were discussing this, and Asher suddenly said, "Dude, reyoxen our crashed boxen". What Asher really meant was "Reboot our crashed box". I looked at him as if he had gone crazy then all of a sudden it struck us, a name that was unique! So we played around with a few words and finally came up with "Reyox". And that's how simple it is!
  • HOSTSEARCH: How do you promote your business/website? Which marketing channel does Reyox.net focus the most?

    ASHER AND JAMES: James: The interesting part is, we haven't started any direct marketing channels up until recently.  Most of our clients have come from basic directory listing and through word of mouth.  When users see how personable our service is, they instantly refer their friends and family.  From there, it's just snowballed.

    Asher: As far as marketing channels are concerned, we're very focused towards word of mouth advertising. Our corporate customer base is quite large and thanks to the 'personal touch' Reyox has, our corporate customers keep referring other companies to us. Even our 'small account holders' are very happy with the level of service they've received so they just keep referring clients our way. Since James and I are well known in various corporate circles, we also get a lot of customers from that alone. Back home I often attend seminars and give presentations on hosting and website design, since I'm originally from Pakistan, the IT culture there is pretty backwards... so my presentations really help in selling accounts. James does similar stuff; his focus right now is on law firms whereas my focus is on agriculture companies back home.
  • HOSTSEARCH: Please define your marketing strategies. What do you think that is your strength for Reyox.net, compare to your major competitors?
    ASHER AND JAMES: James: I think our best marketing strategy is personal service.  There's not a bit of commercial advertising that can replace that, simply because it results in word of mouth referrals.  Whereas some of our larger competitors are able to push hundreds of thousands into large print/television ads, we're able to train our staff more efficiently for a steadily growing company that'll always keep its clients first and its profits last.  We believe our clients see this and thus tend to stay on for more extended periods of time.
  • HOSTSEARCH: What's the best Selling products/services for Reyox.net?
    ASHER AND JAMES: Asher: It's really hard to say because everything just sells really well! We used to offer colocation a while back, that was the only product which did not sell well so we decided to discontinue it to keep focus on our managed hosting. However if I really was to choose something from our offering as a 'best seller', I would have to say our reseller plans and VPS plans sell extremely well. That is probably due to the unique nature of our plans and the great support coupled with them. We still have to see how trends will go, with Reyox's upcoming products including Game Servers and Voice Communication just around the corner, who knows what will be our 'best seller' in the future.
  • HOSTSEARCH: What is the best thing/experience for working in web hosting business? And working for Reyox.net?
    ASHER AND JAMES: Asher: The best experience I can honestly say is the satisfaction that I get at the end of the day when the clients that I personally help out, email me and thank me for the level of personal service we provide. The satisfaction of giving someone truly unique service is better than all the money in the world.

    James: When it all boils down to it, I really enjoy how many of our clients reciprocate the same courtesy we try to give them.  I've often received phone calls to my desk directly from clients simply to 'chit chat' and tell us how they do indeed enjoy our service.  Not to toot our own horns in particular, I'm really proud of what we've accomplished as far as quality clientele goes.
  • HOSTSEARCH: Since web hosting service is considered as rapid change and competitive business, how do you adapt yourself and cope with this challenge?
    ASHER AND JAMES: James: The web hosting industry is always a game of playing 'catch-up' in the sense that no one competitor has a complete edge over another.  It's all a matter of who deploys what fastest and who provides the level of service they promise.  However, to directly answer your question, our secret to adapting to change is generally following industry trends and deploying our own unique platforms before anyone else has a chance to.  
  • HOSTSEARCH: In your opinion, what is the most important factor towards to your success? (i.e network, your plan, etc)
    ASHER AND JAMES: Asher: Again, it all boils down to the personal touch Reyox has. No other company has that as far as my research concludes. Of course just personal touch is definitely not enough, its personal touch (in the right sense) coupled with a spectacular tier-1 network and top quality hardware. Reyox has never made a compromise in terms of network, hardware or software for that matter.
  • HOSTSEARCH: How do you predict the web hosting business trend from now? How can you see yourself and your company in 5 years from now?
    ASHER AND JAMES: Asher: I predict the trend will be the same for the next two years or less, however it will get extremely competitive and it will become hard to survive without a proper niche within the next year. Simply offering hosting is not enough anymore, hosting providers have to go beyond the 'call of duty' to service their clients. I predict that a lot of 'start up' hosting companies may not be able to survive this change. I also feel that consumers will become aware of the 'low quality' hosting companies and servers out there, simply speaking-- the trend for using 'Celerons' or 'Pentium 4s' as hosting hardware is not acceptable. I firmly believe that consumers will become aware of this within this year, maximum by the next. Once they realize the difference between quality and substandard, that will cause the downfall of the thousands of hosting companies running on substandard hardware. Hosting is about redundancy and reliability, which 95% of the 'so-called' hosting companies are unable to provide. Consumers will realize this soon and then only room for the 'best of the best' will remain. Of course there will be lots of other changes as well, I predict a trend of distributed computing finding it's way into the major part of hosting. Which is a good thing really, that will further ensure that only companies who know how to run a real operation will stay in business.

    James: I'm just hoping that we don't come out with laser hosting any time soon :)

    Like we mentioned earlier, Asher and me are already doing our independent research into our own hosting platforms and lots more. We predict that we will be able to adapt to technology changes very fast and moreover introduce new technologies of our own. This year alone we plan on shocking the hosting industry by the introduction of our hosting related software that will set new standards for quality and perfection. Reyox is not just a hosting company; it is also a research and development firm which has been developing 'top secret' software for the last three years. Reyox is here to stay, and the hosting world had better watch out for the fiercest competition imaginable from this small 'ox'.

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