Yahoo, AOL vet Garlinghouse named CEO of YouSendIt

Brad Garlinghouse, who once headed up AOL’s(s AOL) Silicon Valley operations, is now CEO of YouSendIt, a provider of file sharing and storage software for businesses.

In early April, reports surfaced that the current CEO, Ivan Koon would be leaving YouSendIt (see disclosure) after six years at the Campbell, Calif.-based company.  Now we know who will fill his shoes. Garlinghouse will also be chairman of the board.

In a statement released Tuesday, Brian Jacobs, general partner of Emergence Capital, one of YouSendIt’s backers said:

“Brad’s capabilities are well known to Silicon Valley, public market investors and the leading technology companies worldwide. He appreciates the loyalty of our users, our contagious growth and the massive global opportunity for YouSendIt.”

The company is in a white-hot market judging by the number of cloud storage, file sharing-and-sync companies duking it out for paying customers. There it contends with Box, Accellion, OwnCloud, LogMein, Egnyte and dozens of others all trying to convert non-paying “fremium” users to paid customers. They all want to be “the Dropbox of the Enterprise.”

Most of these companies are adding more than file storage and sync as they go along, forging into cloud-based collaboration. Early this year, YouSendIt launched Workstream to address that market and claims The Absolut Company, Atlanta’s Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport, and Pernod Ricard as Workstream customers.

Forrester Analyst Ted Schadler said YouSendIt’s longevity and experience gives it an edge. “Box wants to store all your stuff. YouSendIt can store your stuff but they really want to send, distribute all your stuff,” he said. Given that they’ve been around for awhile, they’ve got a pretty strong security model that makes them attractive to businesses which, face it, are run by people who share and collaborate using documents, he said.

YouSendIt claims 585,000 paid subscribers out of 30 million registered users overall.

Garlinghouse, a former product guy at both AOL and Yahoo(s YHOO), as GigaOM has reported, is best known for the 2006 Peanut Butter Manifesto, which he wrote at Yahoo  and which outlined the challenges faced by the struggling Internet company. Now he’s bringing his talents to a much smaller company, but one that boasts paying customers.

Disclosure: YouSendIt is backed by Alloy Ventures, a venture capital firm that is an investor in the parent company of this blog, Giga Omni Media.