Ali Bauerlein is Chief Financial Officer and Co-Founder of Inogen, Inc. A medical technology company that develops, manufactures and markets innovative oxygen concentrators used to deliver supplemental long-term oxygen therapy to patients suffering from chronic respiratory conditions. In the interview below Ali discusses why Inogen’s executive team chose to use a SecureDocs Virtual Data Room during their IPO, and how it continues to benefit their business today.
What challenges in your business or industry influenced you to look for a solution?
The reason we really started looking for a solution like securedocs was really in preparation for the IPO. So, that really spurred us to say, "we need to do something here because there's so much data that we need to prepare and get ready for the IPO, and have various people have access to certain subsets of that."
What were you using before SecureDocs?
Before SecureDocs we stored our documents on an internal server that we tried to restrict access to, but it really wasn’t a solution for anybody external to see the documents. So, we were just emailing information-it was very inefficient.
What other solutions did you consider?
We started looking around, and the SecureDocs tool really met our needs in terms of what we were looking for. The price was extremely attractive to us compared to the other solutions that we had seen.
The other solutions that we looked at were primarily large solutions through the big printing firms that have data room for IPOs. They were 10X to 20X more expensive than SecureDocs, and there were ongoing costs associated with them. They had such a complicated structure that you could see those costs really adding up.
Why did you choose SecureDocs?
What I liked about SecureDocs was it was a flat-fee, we could put unlimited data in the room and use it for a lot of different reasons. We didn’t have to worry about uploading too many documents because of the unlimited space, it really gave us the flexibility we needed. All of the security and features were on par with what we were seeing from other providers, and in some cases like uploading the documents to the system, were even better.
What types of information do you keep in your SecureDocs Virtual Data Room?
We use SecureDocs for a lot of different documents. Everything from our SEC filings and financials to our board meeting minutes, business contracts, and HR documents. So, we really use SecureDocs as our platform for storing all of our key corporate documents.
If you were going to give advice to another company about when to start using a solution like SecureDocs...When should they start using something like SecureDocs?
If I were to do this over again, or to giving advice to somebody, I think they should do it right at the onset of the company. Because that’s when you can start building out with your information everything you have that is important verses later on when you are trying to recreate all of those documents, which can be quite a burden.
I wish we would have started using it much sooner, because we went through multiple rounds of financing as a private company, and it would have made my life so much easier to have something like SecureDocs in place.
How did you know that it would be beneficial to have one central place to store all of your corporate documents?
These documents take up a ton of space, and it's easier to outsource the storage-knowing that they are secure, and our information is safe.
The security features of make sure that when people are accessing documents they have the right access, they don’t have too much access to things they shouldn’t see, we are able to control what they can and cannot print; all of that is very important to us.
Also, being able to have different people upload into the system, so we don’t have to have one central person, giving us flexibility to expand it out as the business grows.
One last question, when you think of the features that you like best, which one(s) stand out to you?
The drag and drop feature is great, I use it all of the time. It’s easy to drag files in and drop them into the application and they upload straight away.
It’s easy to manage the security and see when people have logged in and what they did with those files is useful, especially in the IPO process.