Darryl Keys is the co-founder of Zypha, a company that helps business reduce their IT spending, while increasing speed and security by implementing complete virtual computing environments. Zypha migrates all its clients files and applications to the cloud so their clients can access the same desktop from multiple devices worldwide without ever owning servers or networking equipment. Zypha is growing today, but just three years ago Keys and his co-founder where at a crossroads and needing to pivot.
"When we first started, we had a global license to technology that enabled heavy diesel trucks to run dual fuel diesel and propane, which reduced emissions and fuel costs," Keys said. "However, we shuttered that effort as the supplier was ultimately unable to confirm compliance with emissions regulations."
At that point, Keys and his UK based co-founder decided to refocus the U.S. subsidiary by exploring opportunities for his co-founder's successful U.K. telecom billing business. But after nine months of intensive research, they decided that the future was desktop virtualization. "We said to ourselves, 'OK we've got a business that is well capitalized and located in the U.S.. What can we do with it?" That pivot was the birth of Zypha and Keys has not looked back since.
That might sound like a lot of diverse business activity to some, not to Keys though. Before these entrepreneurial exploits, he launched a sports internet business with a small IPO, managed a turnaround of a business magazine group, and a large traveling titanic exhibit. This is all after deciding to scratch his entrepreneurial itch at the age of 38 when he was working as a successful corporate and investment banker in London. " Life is short," he said. "I decided I wanted to be an entrepreneur. I wanted to see what I could do working with a lot more freedom."
For those aspiring entrepreneurs, Keys recommends doing your homework to set yourself up for success. "You have to research," he said. "You need to know where the market is, where it’s going, the competition, industry best practices, where to invest in infrastructure and resources at the best costs and watch every dollar and never be afraid to seek advice from those who know more than you do."