Mural specializes in cloud app onboarding

Led by a former Microsoft executive, the company helps small and midsized companies activate and provision cloud services and applications.

Mural occupies a unique space in the ecosystem of integrators, VARs, and consulting companies seeking to help businesses make the most of their cloud infrastructure and application investments. It works with internet service providers (ISPs) and software developers to get small and midsized businesses (SMBs) up and running on cloud services more quickly.

"As they sell their services, we sit inside the catalog as an onboarding solution," said Steve Zimba, president of Mural, and a former executive with BellSouth, Microsoft, and Cbeyond.

Mural's technology is called Platform MaaX, which is a post-sale support portal that some of the company's partners will position as part of their own onboarding services. The services include configuration, set-up, and training. (Mural employees act on behalf of the branded service provider.)

Aside from developing relationships with cloud service providers and telecommunications companies that are creating cloud brokerages and marketplaces, Mural is exploring relationships with Microsoft VARs and integrators, which can resell the Mural managed services as part of their own solution.

As you might expect, given its top executive's background, Mural has a heavy focus on Microsoft cloud services, such as Microsoft Exchange Hosted Services, SharePoint, Office 365, and Lync. In a recent press release, Zimba noted:

Service providers are most vulnerable to losing customers in the first 90 days after a sale. Mural engineers work one on one with SMB employees to engage them more deeply, understand their overall IT needs, and educate them on other Microsoft services they could benefit from. We continue to serve more than 10,000 such businesses every month.

Mural also supports cloud services from Cisco, Citrix, Dell, EMC, McAfee, and Symantec, among others, Zimba said. So far, it has onboarded more than 100,000 SMBs, according to the Mural website.

Platform MaaX includes data migration services, training and certification resources, and application programming interfaces (APIs) specific to a number of different cloud services (which can be used to help customize applications).