Acronis plans to phase out development of its Cyber Backup offering and redirect the resources freed up by that move to its Cyber Protect solution instead.
“Backup is dead,” says Acronis CEO Serguei Beloussov. “The backup solutions we provided in the past are no longer relevant for anyone.”
The data protection vendor announced its exclusive focus on Cyber Protect, as well the forthcoming arrival of lower prices for that product and a new partner program tailored to MSPs, during its Global Cyber Summit event, held both online and in Schaffhausen, Switzerland, this week.
Unveiled a year ago and released to market in May, Cyber Protect includes backup, disaster recovery, anti-malware, anti-ransomware, web filtering, and data authenticity validation functionality, among other features. Combining all of those capabilities in one tightly integrated package with a single agent and unified license, according to Beloussov, improves protection for end users by eliminating gaps between products and simplifying service delivery for channel pros.
“Just one hole could be enough, so you have to protect everything from everything on all layers, and that is complex,” he says. “Because of complexity, many workloads are not really protected.”
Acronis is currently helping its thousands of resellers, MSPs, and other partners get trained on Cyber Protect, according to Gaidar Magdanurov, the vendor’s cyber officer and COO. “Our priority is now to re-educate all the partners, because there’s a dramatic shift that happened in the last few months,” he says. “We had a backup product, a disaster recovery product, a file sync and share, and Cyber Protect. Now everything is Cyber Protect.”
So far, close to 30% of partners have completed the foundation, or introductory, level of training. Acronis plans to get everyone in its channel to that point by the end of the year. As encouragement, it’s both providing credits that partners can use to take training classes for free and making status in the Acronis partner program contingent on getting employees Cyber Protect certified.
“If they want to get a higher level, get more benefits, get higher margins, they need to train their people,” Magdanurov says.
Though sales of Cyber Protect have been strong so far, according to Acronis, the company plans to fuel faster adoption by lowering prices on the solution in November. Those cuts, which will come on top of an earlier price break several months ago, are designed to help partners with work-from-home clients secure a radically expanded attack surface.
“We understand that the infrastructure that needs to be protected is huge because every home now is an office,” Magdanurov says. At the same time, he adds, a sluggish economy has made purchasing security software harder for cash-conscious channel pros and end users alike. “They’re not ready to pay extra because they’re already strained financially.”
Acronis plans to ease that financial pressure further by introducing a free entry-level edition of Cyber Protect without backup functionality. “If you’re not using backup or advanced security capabilities, you won’t have to pay for it at all,” Magdanurov says.