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Centreon, a control tower for online traffic growth

After fifteen years of existence, Centreon is at the heart of the digitalization of the economy. The progression of its turnover illustrates this evolution. "It took us ten years to reach 2 million in annual revenues, and only five years to multiply by five, to reach 10 million," says Julian Mathis, CEO of Centreon. 20% of the turnover is generated by export sales. Profitable since its inception, the company, which is defined as "a control tower for the Internet traffic", is born in the school Epitech in Paris. She seeks now to raise funds. "Our challenge is to continue to maintain an annual growth of 40%", adds Julien Mathis. The more the company grows, the challenge is complicated to achieve.

"so far we are financed using bank loans. For this, it is necessary to balance sheets, otherwise the banks do not follow. We are profitable", explains the CEO, whose objective now is to generate 50 million euros of turnover in 2024. His company employs 90 people in France, in Benelux and in Toronto for the north american market. Centreon serves 600 paying customers, mostly large businesses, governments, and even large companies intermediaries. "In total, we employ some 200,000 users because the base of our software is open-source, historically called Oreon," says Julian Mathis.

Digitizing to "the forced march"

The containment has highlighted the indispensable aspect of digital tools. "The digitizing of business has made the forced march, we did in two months what we thought we do in ten!", see Julien Mathis. The crisis of the Covid-19 has reinforced the need for companies to ensure their applications, networks, servers, storage... to work permanently and in a optimal timeframe. The tools of Centreon for example, can verify that an application is available within a reasonable time, or verify the performance, to have no cuts in service. ..

Centreon already conducts analyses of networks, to alert in case of trouble. But businesses have new needs and always ask for more details. The group aims to develop tools based on artificial intelligence and machine learning (AIOps: artificial Intelligence for IT operations). The goal is to achieve an intelligent system, able to calculate thresholds that adjust to use. It must also be able to distinguish a rise in the normal load due to a specific activity of a DDOS attack, for example, with "event correlation". Very schematically, the server of a paid service should make the difference between a denial of service attack and a massive increase and rapid client request.

"We help reduce downtime, particularly in identifying the origin. We also analyze their impact to push systems administrators to solve the problem," explains Julien Mathis. This digitizing new companies could also pose financial problems, with major challenges of managing the costs of projects. "It is necessary to be able to calculate the effectiveness of an option. We can analyze the power consumption on a data center, consumption on the servers of Amazon Web services (AWS), to see if the tools (the CPU) are well-dimensioned," says the boss of Centreon, whose software can make the management of capacity, "to put fitness need IT and business needs". For the moment, Centreon installs its software by its customers. "The Cloud is not our model. And we are forced to take into account the fact that all of our customers are not passed to the Cloud," says Julien Mathis. before adding that his business is "ready to accompany this migration inevitable." Centreon is already in the Cloud for some of its customers.

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