With a recession looming, "Rest of World" becomes critical

Where do you sell with a US recession? Everywhere else.

IBM and others are driving growth outside the US. This will become even more critical as a US recession becomes a near certainty.

It's also why it suddenly makes a lot of sense to be based outside the US if you're a vendor.

Don't get me wrong: there are many difficulties inherent in starting a business outside of the US. The US is the primary market for just about all software vendors, and will be for the foreseeable future, China notwithstanding. If you want to be a serious software player, you have to compete in the US.

But consider the following:

My employer, Alfresco, is based out of London. In consequence, roughly 50 percent of our revenue comes from outside the Americas (EMEA, APAC). In a troubled economy, I want my revenue to be as broad-based as possible. Having all my customer eggs in one basket (Americas) is a bad policy on the eve of a US recession.

So, should all companies pack up and move to EMEA? Of course not. (Well, unless you want to see really good football/soccer.) But it does mean that US vendors need to be actively plowing the fields of EMEA and APAC. Now.

Tech Culture
About the author

    Matt Asay is chief operating officer at Canonical, the company behind the Ubuntu Linux operating system. Prior to Canonical, Matt was general manager of the Americas division and vice president of business development at Alfresco, an open-source applications company. Matt brings a decade of in-the-trenches open-source business and legal experience to The Open Road, with an emphasis on emerging open-source business strategies and opportunities. He is a member of the CNET Blog Network and is not an employee of CNET. You can follow Matt on Twitter @mjasay.


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