Cloud-based recovery as a service leader Axcient today announces a Direct to Cloud offering that enables customers to replicate their IT infrastructure in the cloud without use of an appliance. Axcient’s Direct to Cloud platform allows customers to replicate their servers, desktops and laptops within Axcient’s cloud environment to ensure the continuity of business operations and enhance the operational agility of end users. The Axcient Business Recovery Cloud allows customers to create a replica of their entire infrastructure by way of an internet connection that creates an initial snapshot of an infrastructure at a designated point in time, and then subsequently creates incremental backups in tandem with customer requirements. In contrast to replicating swaths of files, the Axcient Business Recovery Cloud creates a cloud-based copy of the physical and virtual servers, laptop images and desktops. Customers can monitor the health of their cloud infrastructure by means of an Axcient dashboard as represented below:
Axcient’s Direct to Cloud replication offering gives customers the flexibility to replicate their infrastructures within the cloud without the need to purchase or maintain either a physical or virtual appliance. Moreover, the solution features instant failover functionality marked by the launch of a virtual replica within the Axcient Business Recovery Cloud to ensure the maintenance of business continuity. Customers can access Axcient’s Direct to Cloud platform by means of an encrypted internet connection that allows for the secure transmission of files between a host infrastructure and Axcient’s environment. As a result of today’s release, Axcient becomes one of the few Recovery as a Service vendors that can claim options for cloud-based backup and recovery that include a hardware appliance, software-based appliance or a direct internet connection as the modality for enabling its cloud-based recovery platform. The platform’s range of deployment options renders it ideal for small to medium-sized businesses that require a production-grade platform at a reasonable price-point in comparison to consumer-grade options that focus primarily on backing up assemblages of files.
On February 18, Recovery as a Service leader Axcient announced the finalization of $25M in Series E funding in a round led by Industry Ventures with additional participation from existing investors Allegis Capital, Peninsula Ventures, Scale Venture Partners and Thomvest Ventures. The round validates the business model of Axcient’s cloud-based recovery as a service platform as exemplified by 50% year over year growth in customers signed in 2014, Axcient’s acquisition of DirectRestore, more than 30 releases and enhancements to the Axcient business recovery cloud and the release of the second generation of Axcient’s virtual appliance. The $25M in funding will also be used to fund a novel method of compensating channel partners that Axcient will use to enhance distribution of its product. Whereas SaaS solutions have typically struggled to achieve traction in a VAR sales partner model because of low monthly margins for sales professionals, Axcient proposes to offer channel partners up front compensation for the sale of its business recovery cloud solution. Axcient brands the up front compensation model under the acronym SaaS: FLO that stands for SaaS Fully Loaded Option. Axcient’s strategy of expanding its sales pipeline by means of partnerships with VARs under the terms of an innovative compensation model promises to increase its market traction in a landscape that includes the likes of more established cloud-based business continuity brands such as Symantec and EMC. In a phone interview with Cloud Computing Today, Axcient’s Director of Product Marketing Daniel Kuperman noted that although Axcient faces the challenge of educating its VARs about the business and technological benefits of its cloud-based recovery as a service platform, it stands to benefit immensely from the potentialities implicit in introducing the agility and operational simplicity of its platform to a wider range of customers. Assuming Axcient can succeed at training its VAR ecosystem, it stands poised to consolidate on its successes in 2014 and continue to stake out a leadership position in the rapidly growing cloud-based recovery as a service space, particularly because of the richness of its technology for empowering customers to perform granular recoveries of specific files and folders in addition to larger swaths of infrastructure. Wednesday Series E round brings the total capital raised by Axcient to roughly $85M.
Last week, Axcient recently announced the release of the latest version of its Axicent Business Recovery Cloud marked by faster replication and recovery times for its cloud-based Recovery as a Service platform. The Axcient Business Recovery Cloud now features the ability to migrate or recover physical servers as virtual machines in addition to drag and drop functionality that empowers customers to transfer large numbers of files and folders using Windows Explorer. Axcient’s integration with Windows Explorer enables customers to search for files and folders within their recovery infrastructure and subsequently transfer them en masse to the target device of their choice. The latest version of the Axcient Business Recovery Cloud also supports the ability to instantly recover a snapshot of an infrastructure from any point in time in addition to the most recent version. Moreover, advancements in Axcient’s data replication algorithm mean that replication occurs three times faster than before, enabling shorter RPO times and an enhanced ability to maintain copies of recent data and image versions. The enhancements collectively represent a significant upgrade to the Axcient by enhancing the platform’s replication and backup functionality while concurrently enriching the product’s search and recovery functionality. With this release, Axcient continues to disrupt the economics and operational agility of cloud-based recovery and consolidate its leadership position within the Recovery as a Service space.
Recovery as a service vendor Axcient announced the acquisition of DirectRestore LLC on Tuesday, September 16. DirectRestore specializes in granular recovery technology that enables customers to perform granular recovery from file and image-based backups. More specifically, DirectRestore’s technology facilitates granular recovery from applications such as Microsoft Exchange, Microsoft Outlook, SharePoint and SQL Server. Axcient’s acquisition of DirectRestore promises to complement its cloud-based recovery as a service platform by enriching its functionality with respect to granular recovery such as the recovery of individual files and objects. In addition, the DirectRestore acquisition will expand Axcient’s research and development team by 30% as noted in the company’s blog post announcing the news. Axcient was in the midst of developing its own, proprietary granular recovery technology when it learned of DirectRestore’s technology according to MSPmentor. Axcient CEO Justin Moore elaborated on the decision to acquire DirectRestore as follows:
We were blown away by how advanced it was and how seamless we could integrate it into our core solution and merge it with our code-base. However, since controlling the technology and having a fully integrated solution has always been a part of our mission as it allows us to develop more rapidly control our roadmap and service our partners and customers better, we knew we had to acquire the company or continue building the product ourselves.
Moore remarks on the ease of DirectRestore’s integration into its technology and Axcient’s concomitant ability to control the development of its technology and product roadmap. Axcient now delivers cloud-based backup and recovery services in conjunction with granular restoration functionality that reinforces the ability of its platform to disrupt the economics and operational agility of contemporary backup and recovery products and services. The acquisition suggests impressive market traction on Axcient’s part in addition to continued product maturation and differentiation that sets it apart from other vendors in the cloud backup and recovery space. Terms of the acquisition were not disclosed.
Axcient today announced the release of the second generation of its virtual appliance for enabling organizations to implement cloud-based backup and recovery solutions. The second generation of Axcient’s virtual appliance features backup speeds at rates twice as fast as the initial version of the appliance, a reduction in the storage footprint required for backups and the ability to run more instances of the virtual appliance within the same virtual host machine. In addition, whereas the initial appliance delivered backups of up to 20 TB, the second generation of the Axcient virtual appliance allows users greater flexibility in the maximum infrastructure designated for backup by allowing backups ranging from 1 TB to 20 TB. Moreover, the second version now supports AMD processors in addition to Intel. Axcient’s virtual appliance represents one of the company’s top selling products and currently boasts roughly 75 Managed Service Provider clients that serve over 280 end user organizations as told to Cloud Computing Today in an interview with Product Marketing Manager, Daniel Kuperman.
The company’s disruptive cloud-based recovery as a service technology earned the company the distinction of Excellent in “Critical Capabilities” in Gartner’s Recovery as a Service report. Meanwhile, Forrester’s evaluation of Disaster Recovery Service vendors by Rachel Dines noted that Axcient “excelled in its proven success and experience” and delivered “competitive” product offerings as did HP and CenturyLink. The bottom line here is that Axcient has ushered in a revolution in data protection for the enterprise at the level of both product functionality and economics that threatens to render traditional, on premise colocation facilities obsolete. Axcient represents one of the vendors that spearheaded the creation of a Recovery as a Service space that prided itself as much on recovery as it did on backup. With an appliance that can be installed in minutes that boasts faster backups, a lower storage footprint and greater flexibility in the maximum backup size, the Recovery as a Service space should brace itself for even greater traction on the part of Axcient, even as the space witnesses new entrants and upstarts.
Today, Recovery as a Service vendor Axcient is rendering its virtual appliance product offering free to customers for an unlimited time period. Under the terms of the offering, customers can take advantage of Axcient Free to enjoy backup and recovery for 20 TB of data for a maximum of three servers. Axcient Free can be sampled by downloading the virtual appliance and configuring it such that customers enjoy local protection and restoration functionality at a price point and with an ease of deployment that renders it attractive in comparison to local backup solutions such as Symantec Backup Exec. More importantly, Axcient Free gives customers the opportunity to sample Axcient’s infrastructure before considering a transition to the company’s enterprise-grade, cloud-based recovery as a service solution. Because Axcient’s recovery as a service offering leverages the cloud to deliver backup, disaster recovery and high-availability of IT infrastructures, it can deliver a richness of restoration functionality that exceeds legacy, onsite backup solutions. For example, Axcient’s version control features and the ability to locate and restore specific files without restoring entire servers gives customers a degree of restoration flexibility that facilitates the larger goal of enabling high-availability of mission-critical applications. As such, its recovery as a service offering stands poised to revolutionize enterprise options for backup and recovery by foregrounding recovery and availability, while concurrently leveraging the economics and agility of the cloud to render local backup solutions obsolete.
Recovery as a Service vendor Axcient revealed details of a “swap-out” program designed to provoke customers that currently use vendors such as Symantec, Datto, eFolder and Stroragecraft into swapping out their existing backup and recovery solution in favor of Axcient’s cloud-based service. Axcient claims that service providers that have switched to its cloud-based backup and recovery solution experience a 30% increase in margins in addition to the ability to protect designated infrastructures in less than 15 minutes. Axcient’s announcement of its swap-out campaign comes roughly five weeks after its release of a virtual appliance that accelerates the installation process and reduces the total cost of ownership specific to deploying its solution. More than a simple backup and recovery service, Axcient’s cloud-based solution provides an innovative interface for recovering specific files as opposed to entire swaths of infrastructure by way of impressive search functionality that allows customers to locate backups of the files or folders that they are seeking to restore. Because its platform is built within a cloud-based infrastructure, Axcient promises to disrupt the economics of backup solutions for the enterprise by delivering a business continuity offering that competes in price, agility and richness of recovery functionality. Customers who exchange their current backup solution for Axcient by April 15, 2014 will be rewarded with a Rolex watch worth up to $20,000.