Barracuda Networks has plans to add staff and completely fill its downtown Ann Arbor office space in its newest wave of expansion.
The information technology security company, based in California with a large office in Ann Arbor, recently announced plans to add 115 new employees here over the next four years, including software engineers, quality assurance and sales staff, and tech support engineers. The company currently employs 226 in Ann Arbor.
Barracuda will be expanding with help from Ann Arbor SPARK and the Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC). SPARK plans to help Barracuda fill those positions via SPARK's jobs portal and through highlighting Barracuda jobs in its weekly newsletter, as well as providing talent scouts to help identify prospective hires. Barracuda also received a $750,000 grant through the Business Development Program, available through the Michigan Strategic Fund in cooperation with the MEDC.
Rod Mathews, senior vice president and general manager of data protection at Barracuda, says downtown Ann Arbor was the "most appealing place" to add new employees, because Barracuda already has a "critical mass of people working on email archiving and cloud solutions." Additionally, Mathews says current employees like the restaurants, shops, and general atmosphere around downtown Ann Arbor.
Mathews says when Barracuda Networks moved into the former Borders Books headquarters on a long-term lease, the company was already planning to grow to fill the available space.
After the 115 new employees are hired, the building will be full. If Barracuda wants to expand again, the company might need to look into moving, but for now the space at 317 Maynard St. is adequate, Mathews says.
Mathews says the company made the expansion because its business is growing overall as more businesses turn to cloud-based solutions such as Office 365 and Microsoft Azure.
"We're in a great position in the market as people transition to the cloud because our solutions are unique in the marketplace," Mathews says.
Mathews says Barracuda is already one of the largest tech employers in Ann Arbor's downtown and the company is committed to staying in the downtown area.
"We worked with the MEDC to identify incentives the state has for hiring people from Michigan," Mathews says. "We really like the state and the educational institutions around the state that we hire people from."
Sarah Rigg is a freelance writer and editor in Ypsilanti Township. You may reach her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
This piece is part of a series highlighting local business growth in the Ann Arbor area. It is supported by Ann Arbor SPARK.
Photos courtesy of Barracuda Networks.