[ Disclosure: I was invited by GestaltIT as a delegate to their Storage Field Day 19 event from Jan 22-24, 2020 in the Silicon Valley USA. My expenses, travel, accommodation and conference fees were covered by GestaltIT, the organizer and I was not obligated to blog or promote the vendors’ technologies to be presented at this event. The content of this blog is of my own opinions and views ]
Infrascale™ was relatively unknown for the Storage Field Day 19 delegates when they presented a few weeks ago in San Jose. Between 2015-2017, they have received several awards and accolades, including being in the Leaders quadrant for the 2017 Gartner Magic Quadrant for DR-as-a-Service.
I have known of Infrascale since 2016 as the BC and DR landscape was taking off back then, gravitating towards the cloud as a secondary platform for recovery.
Gartner on; Gartner off
Infrascale was in the Leaders quadrant in 2017. Then they were not in 2018. If you look at the 2 MQs DR-as-a-Service for 2017 (Left) and 2018 (Right), there were major changes:
There was a major shake off by Gartner in 2018 after they revised their inclusion and exclusion requirements to be in the quadrant. Infrascale, together with several vendors like Datto, Axcient were dropped. Several vendors which remained in the quadrant were powered by Zerto, as they have claimed in their blog.
Between 2017 and 2019, the DR-as-a-Service appeared to have retracted in Asia as well. The hot-meter has gone down, and the market consolidated with Datto acquired by Vista Equity Partners in 2017, and Storagecraft acquired Exablox. Also Unitrends was acquired by Kaseya in 2018. Respectively, Datto partnered with stable mate Autotask to focus on the Managed Service Provider (MSP) market, and StorageCraft peddling the OneXafe solution as a secondary hyperconverged for the mid-market segment.
In addition, Carbonite was given a new lease of life by Opentext late last year and Druva has been building up their prowess in Asia with the ramp up of staff in Singapore. Veeam Availabillity Suite is also addressing the SME market by working the local and regional MSPs. And I don’t want to leave out Datrium too.
The SME (small medium enterprises) in Asia appeared to be greatly under served. Since the laptop smashing stunt days by Datto in the region, I have not seen or heard much of DR-as-a-Service vendors serving the SME market strongly in Asia, other than iland.
What the SME wants
Many SME businesses avoid DR (Disaster Recovery) solutions. In their minds, it is expensive; it is complex and they use their non-IT approaches doing backup. They copy and paste files to public cloud storage, into USB hard drives and not knowing that these efforts are actually more cumbersome and more expensive in data recovery. The threat of ransomware is also worrying in their minds.
But the flip side is that their apprehension towards cloud is relaxing, and that is a good thing.
SME businesses want DR to be simple, unintrusive, fast recovery and favourable pricing and this mindset is one that DRaaS vendors should cultivate.
A reboot is apt
Russ Reeder, the newly minted CEO of Infrascale, was diligent in letting the SFD19 delegates know that he was new with the company. It was also not subtle to let the world know that Infrascale was doing a reboot. But in this reboot, it is important to establish what Infrascale wants to be.
Opportunities abound where backup is no longer the mundane and boring part of IT. The cybersecurity tack has following some backup and data recovery vendors, and data analytics is permeating the secondary data market as well. Then there is the compliance and records management, and even that data lifecycle management part which have gained attention since GDPR (General Daa Protection Regulation) came up almost 2 years ago. These are some thoughts that might be part of the new Infrascale.
The unknown part has made known through marketing activities like Storage Field Day and I would expect more promotions and campaigns to follow. Act I was a crowded DR-as-a-Service market where upstart vendors jumped in, players and pretenders alike. It is time for Infrascale to enact Act II. The reboot of Infrascale will play out in the months to come, hopefully with a stronger market identity.
[ Note: The Infrascale videos and presentations at Storage Field Day are found here ]
[ Note: Fellow delegate Dan Frith blogged Infrascale protection here]