MOST VENDORS LOVE IT when their brand becomes synonymous with a solution category. Acronis, by contrast, is determined to break people of that habit.
“We’ve always been known as kind of a backup company,” says Pat Hurley (pictured), the company’s vice president and general manager for the Americas. “We do a whole lot more than backup.”
That’s true today (the company also offers file sync and share, notary, and cloud storage services, among others), but will become significantly more true in October. That’s when Acronis will officially launch Total Protect, an all-new, all-in-one “cyber-protection” platform that adds anti-malware and anti-ransomware capabilities backed by artificial intelligence to the company’s existing backup and disaster recovery offerings.
The forthcoming product fits within an emerging industry trend: the redefinition of “data protection” to encompass not just BDR but security too. Carbonite had the same vision in mind when it bought security vendor Webroot in February. “They’re cut from the same cloth,” observes Hurley of backup and cybersecurity. “It’s making sure that your data is protected, and it can be protected in a number of different ways.”
Five Key Requirements
The Acronis approach to data protection is built around five key requirements encapsulated in the acronym SAPAS, which stands for safety, accessibility, privacy, authenticity, and security. Total Protect, according to Hurley, will enable channel pros to provision and manage all those functions through a single, consolidated interface—even if they’re delivered by a competing vendor.
All the new software will have the same hallmarks as Acronis’ existing systems, he adds. “Our solutions are going be easy to use, they’re going to be reliable, they’re going to be fast.” They’ll be flexible too, Hurley promises. Users can run the software on-premises, in Acronis’s cloud, or in either Amazon Web Services or Microsoft Azure. “The look and feel, the clicks you’re making, are essentially the same,” Hurley says.
The Acronis partner program is designed to be flexible as well, with resources for traditional VARs, managed service providers, and managed security service providers, among others. Of the roughly 4,500 active members in the program today, about 2,100 are service providers of one kind or another. Acronis has “aggressive” targets for attracting even more, as well as benefits specifically tailored to their needs. Those include access to subscription-based pricing and multitenant management tools, white-label marketing materials, and in-depth training courses designed to give newcomers to the managed services model especially the know-how they need to provide Tier 1 support to their customers.