6 Dec, 2022 | 3 min read

Consistent Growth, Improved Collaboration, and New Cloud Products: WSO2’s Year in Review

  • Devaka Randeniya
  • Chief Revenue Officer - WSO2

As 2022 draws to a close, we sat down with our Chief Revenue Officer Devaka Randeniya to talk about how WSO2 performed over the year, key highlights, and what stakeholders can expect in 2023.

What were some of the highlights for 2022?

WSO2 had yet another successful year. By the close of this year, we expect our annual recurring revenue (ARR) to grow at approximately 30% YoY and net dollar retention (NDR) to stay above 110%, amid currency devaluations and market volatility across the world.

The company is nearing 800 customers globally, and we’re excited to have ventured into new markets like Botswana, Burundi, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Maldives, and Bangladesh. We also expanded our global partner list to over 200 and completed our Series E growth funding round—with a $93 million investment from Goldman Sachs and Info Edge

All of this is confirmation of our industry-leading products and the people who dedicate their talent, time, and passion to realizing our vision of becoming a world-class technology provider for digital transformation. Equally important, it’s also a testament to our customers and partners who have joined hands with us to transform organizations to become more competitive.

In a challenging year, how did WSO2 achieve these accomplishments? 

As a technology vendor that provides open-source software, we make it easy for organizations to test and adopt our products. This has helped our customers to quickly bootstrap their projects, leveraging our platform for API management and customer identity and access management, at a fraction of the cost compared to a commercial product.

WSO2 has always believed that digital transformation for an organization is a complex journey that requires a suite of products. And we pride ourselves on being a “one-stop-shop” to help our customers solve their business problems with our extensive range of offerings.

"Customer success is the bedrock of our success."

We focus on long-term partnerships as opposed to short-term goals. We were one of the very few that offered concessions and significant discounts to support businesses that were adversely impacted by COVID-19. 

Our channel partners have also played a key role, representing approximately 40% of our total ARR for 2022. They’ve been pivotal to our significant growth in international markets, and we expect this to continue in the coming years. 

How have industry stakeholders responded to WSO2’s mission?

We’ve seen some really encouraging signs. Leading analysts like KuppingerCole, Forrester, GigaOm, and Gartner have all noted our strengths in providing world-class solutions. WSO2 API Manager released version 4.1 and WSO2 Identity Server released version 6.0, as we continue to further improve our products. G2, the world’s largest and most trusted software marketplace, recognized both products in the Summer G2 Grid Reports for API Management and Identity and Access Management. Additionally, Ballerina, an open-source programming language for the cloud, moved up to #87 in RedMonk’s Programming Language Rankings. This is remarkable progress for a programming language that's only five years old.

WSO2 was also a key sponsor at major events like the Gartner IAM Summits in London and Las Vegas, as well as the Gartner IT Symposiums in Orlando and the Gold Coast. We made our presence felt at GITEX (Dubai), KubeCon + CloudNativeCon (North America), Identity Week (UK), and many other events worldwide. It’s been great to meet and show our products in-person, and the response from the global community has been very positive. These conferences have also helped us to improve our awareness in key regions and create new relationships.

What initiatives have WSO2 taken to increase its global presence and support its customers? 

Currently, WSO2 has customers in 90 international markets. We aim to reach 100 by 2024/2025. This would be a unique achievement for a company that has operated for 17 years.

We headed into 2022 with 8 offices in the US, Sri Lanka, Australia, the UK, the Middle East, Brazil, Germany, and India. During the year, we started plans to expand our reach by having our presence in Singapore, Malaysia, the Netherlands, and Greece.

We’ve also joined hands with Microsoft to improve developer efficiency (by abstracting away the complexities of setting up in the cloud) and cut time to market. We’re looking forward to seeing this relationship yield positive results. The company also made great strides in building strategic partnerships with leading global systems integrators like Virtusa.

What are some of the challenges your customers have experienced this year and how is WSO2 working with them to overcome these?

One of the main challenges is getting projects off the ground. Most digital transformation projects fail or take way too long and companies end up spending significant capital. We help our customers by supporting them not only with our offerings but also via training and linking them up with our regional channel partners. This helps customers meet their timelines as quickly as possible. 

Another issue is showing the overall ROI. We want to help our customers achieve their business goals over the long-term, as opposed to getting quick wins. We understand that we’re trying to fix complex business problems. We know that real success takes time and we want to help customers accomplish more via our products.

With difficult financial times ahead, being able to successfully deploy such projects will become even harder. This is where organizations can benefit from our expertise. 

Can you talk about how the company is gearing up for the future?

WSO2 has always strived to be visionary. About 60% of our workforce focuses on R&D and product development. We will continue to develop and improve our software products (WSO2 API Manager and WSO2 Identity Server) as well as our accelerators for Banking, Financial Services and Insurance and Healthcare. We’re also developing cutting-edge software as a service (SaaS) products (Choreo and Asgardeo). These new products will significantly lower the skill, time, and cost barriers to delivering great digital experiences.

As a product-led service organization, we understand that different enterprises have different requirements. We want to continually improve both sets of products and have them perform at world-class levels to propel future growth. Being able to provide such a portfolio of both software and SaaS products allows us to engage with customers who are in different maturity stages of technology adoption, which, in turn, allows us to be in many markets. 

What can customers and other industry players expect from WSO2 in 2023?

We’re excited for Choreo and Asgardeo, and believe 2023 will be the year these products become game-changers. We encourage customers to get in touch with us to find out more about how we intend to continue and expand the products on our software side. 

From a business standpoint, we intend to work closely with our customers by capitalizing on our new offices in Malaysia, the Netherlands, Singapore, and Greece as we push to develop fruitful relationships that we can nurture over the long-term. This will be supplemented by the addition of localized workshops around the world.

We’re projecting to grow at 30% next year and continue the trend of being a profitable, lean organization that provides industry-leading products.

"Look for WSO2 to keep on innovating so that you can realize even more value."

This is our North Star for 2023.

If you’d like to find out more or want to take your company’s digital transformation efforts to new heights, feel free to get in touch with Devaka at [email protected]