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Highlights

Welcome to another episode of Category Visionaries — the show that explores GTM stories from tech’s most innovative B2B founders. In today’s episode, we’re speaking with Omri Gazitt, CEO and Founder at Aserto, an authorization-as-a-service platform that has raised over $5 million in funding. Omri, a veteran in the tech industry, has had an illustrious career that spans early-stage startups to giants like Microsoft and HP. He’s played pivotal roles in the development of foundational technologies like .NET, Azure, and Azure Active Directory. With Aserto, Omri is tackling the complex problem of authorization, aiming to simplify and secure the way permissions are managed across enterprise applications.

  • Omri’s journey from being a founding engineer at Neon Systems to pivotal roles at Microsoft, HP, and then the Chief Product Officer at Puppet, showcasing a deep engagement with cloud services, open-source software, and enterprise solutions.
  • His transition from corporate roles to entrepreneurship was partly inspired by a desire to escape the feeling of being a cog in the machine at large companies, coupled with a pivotal moment influenced by Steve Jobs’ 2005 Stanford commencement address.
  • The inception of Aserto was driven by the realization that authorization remains a complex, unsolved problem in software development, despite the advancements in authentication technologies.
  • The challenges of building a business around a nascent subcategory in cloud-native authorization, with Omri and his team aiming to standardize and simplify authorization practices across industries.
  • The strategic pivot from focusing solely on technology to understanding and engaging with market dynamics, identifying user pain points, and effectively communicating Aserto’s value proposition to potential clients.
  • Aserto’s vision for the future includes becoming the enterprise control plane for authorization, indicating an ambitious plan to shape and lead the cloud-native authorization category.
  • Omri’s perspective on collaboration with competitors to establish and grow the cloud-native authorization category, highlighting the importance of standards and shared frameworks in the evolution of new technological domains.

Actionable
Takeaways

Target Pain Points for Early Adoption:

Omri's approach with Aserto highlights the effectiveness of targeting specific pain points within niche markets for early product adoption. For B2B founders, focusing on solving distinct, pressing problems for businesses can accelerate initial traction and customer acquisition.

Build for the End-user, Not Just the Buyer:

Aserto's strategy underscores the importance of developing solutions that cater not only to the decision-makers or buyers but also to the end-users within organizations. This dual focus can enhance product value and user satisfaction, fostering stronger customer relationships and long-term retention.

Utilize Strategic Content to Educate Your Market:

Given Aserto's efforts to define and grow a nascent category, a key takeaway for B2B founders is the value of producing educational content that addresses both the problem space and the solution. Such content can raise awareness, build category recognition, and position your company as a thought leader in emerging fields.

Collaborate for Category Growth:

The notion of collaborating with competitors to define and grow a new category, as mentioned in Omri's strategy, offers a unique lesson in GTM execution. Founders can consider strategic partnerships and collective efforts to establish standards and practices, benefiting the entire ecosystem and accelerating market adoption.

Feedback Loop for Product Evolution:

Omri's experience points to the importance of establishing a continuous feedback loop with early adopters to refine and evolve the product offering. B2B founders should prioritize customer feedback to ensure the solution remains aligned with market needs and user expectations.

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