Actifio claims it is the 'fastest growing enterprise storage firm' – ever

Thin copying, fat juicy revenues

High performance access to file storage

Actifio, a privately held storage startup founded in 2008, is crowing like a chanticleer that business was booming last year for its funky Copy Data Storage arrays. Probably in the hopes of either raking in more venture funding or setting itself up to go public at some point in the future.

Copy Data Storage is the brain child of Ash Ashutosh, the founder of storage resource management AppIQ (scarfed up by Hewlett-Packard back in the days when it made smaller and sensible acquisitions). The company partially uncloaked in the summer of 2009 and raised $57.5m in three rounds of funding in 2010 and 2011 to fuel its growth.

With Copy Data Storage, there are a few different ideas at play. The first is to consolidate all of the various kinds of snapshots, backups, and copies of files, databases, and systems into a single storage array called the Protection and Availability System, or PAS for short.

The second idea is to take initial snapshots, backups, and copies from production systems and then let PAS do what can be thought of as "thin copying" the next time a snapshot, backup, or copy is made from those applications.

The PAS system keeps all of the metadata and incremental files and allows for storage admins to surf forward and backward in time, seeing how the files change over time and allowing for replication from any point in time. (Think of Apple's Time Machine for Mac OS.)

The Copy Data Storage can be used as primary system storage or as a target for replicated data coming off production systems, either set up in the data center or in a remote recovery facility. (You can get all the finer points from El Reg storage guru Chris Mellor here.)

The idea behind Copy Data Storage seems to be taking off, with Actifio bragging in this blog post that revenues in 2012 were exploding – up 700 per cent over 2011's figures, in fact. This was the tenth consecutive quarter of double digit sequential revenue growth for Actifio, and the fifth consecutive quarter of annual year-on-year growth in excess of 500 per cent.

"Actifio is now the fastest growing enterprise storage firm from inception ever," the company proudly proclaimed. (It is tough for any of us to prove or disprove this, of course.)

Actifio said that it did 62 "new transactions" in the fourth quarter, with the average deal size of $210,000. It is not precisely clear what an old transaction might be, but what is clear is that this works out to a little over $13m in Q4. If what Actifio meant is that this is the revenue from new customers, rather than existing customers buying more capacity, then sales are even larger.

The company bragged further that it now has direct sales operations in 16 different countries, and generates 84 per cent of its revenues from its channel partners. Part of that explosive growth in 2012, in fact, may have been due to the reseller agreement that Actifio inked in with IBM in February 2012. IBM actually runs the PAS code underlying the Copy Data Storage on its own DS3500 Express, V7000, XIV, and SVC storage hardware and software.

The whole point of Copy Data Storage is that it runs in conjunction with your existing servers, switches, and storage arrays. The software comes in a flavor called 100T that is aimed at data centers and compute farms that scales from 15TB to 100TB in managed capacity. This setup is limited to serving up to 1,000 virtual machines on clusters and uses Gigabit or 10 Gigabit Ethernet switching between servers and storage.

The Enterprise flavor of Copy Data Storage is for larger, multi-tenant environments and scales over 100TB with a ceiling currently around 8PB. The company claims – and has a report from Enterprise Strategy Group – that it can eliminate backup windows while at the same time cutting network bandwidth needs by 95 per cent for snapshots, backups, and copies and reducing storage capacity by 29 per cent.

It is a wonder that IBM or Oracle hasn't bought Actifio yet. North Bridge Venture Partners, Greylock Partners, Advanced Technology Ventures, and Andreessen Horowitz, who kicked all that venture cash into Actifio, are probably thinking the same thing. ®

High performance access to file storage

More from The Register

next story
Seagate brings out 6TB HDD, did not need NO STEENKIN' SHINGLES
Or helium filling either, according to reports
European Court of Justice rips up Data Retention Directive
Rules 'interfering' measure to be 'invalid'
Dropbox defends fantastically badly timed Condoleezza Rice appointment
'Nothing is going to change with Dr. Rice's appointment,' file sharer promises
Cisco reps flog Whiptail's Invicta arrays against EMC and Pure
Storage reseller report reveals who's selling what
Just what could be inside Dropbox's new 'Home For Life'?
Biz apps, messaging, photos, email, more storage – sorry, did you think there would be cake?
IT bods: How long does it take YOU to train up on new tech?
I'll leave my arrays to do the hard work, if you don't mind
Amazon reveals its Google-killing 'R3' server instances
A mega-memory instance that never forgets
USA opposes 'Schengen cloud' Eurocentric routing plan
All routes should transit America, apparently
prev story


Mainstay ROI - Does application security pay?
In this whitepaper learn how you and your enterprise might benefit from better software security.
Five 3D headsets to be won!
We were so impressed by the Durovis Dive headset we’ve asked the company to give some away to Reg readers.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Mobile application security study
Download this report to see the alarming realities regarding the sheer number of applications vulnerable to attack, as well as the most common and easily addressable vulnerability errors.