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'Any hypervisor, any cloud': Software defined data migrata Zerto cops 25m D-round dollars

'This war chest will expand our footprint' ... can chests do that?

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Zerto, the hypervisor-based replicant - hey, this is sounding like Blade Runner - has raised $26 million in a funding D-round.

The venture capital funding history looks like this:

  • July 2011 - $6 million seed and A-round funding
  • August 2011 - $15 million B-round
  • April 2013 - $13 million C-round
  • June 2014 - $25 million D-round

So total funding we know about is $59 million but the company now says it has received more than $60 million. We thought the C-round might be a pre-IPO or pre-acquisition round but that proved not to be the case, and here we are with another $25 million in the bank to grow the company.

Zerto says the cash will be used to provide “a large war chest to allow Zerto to expand its global footprint, maintain long-term independence and focus major R&D efforts around the company’s recently launched 'Cloud Fabric' initiative for workload mobility in hybrid clouds.”

That “long-term independence” phrase rules out an acquisition and signals that an IPO is still on the cards - as VC backers always want a profitable exit.

Mark Lotke, Managing Partner of D-round leader and new investor Harmony Partners, said:

“Zerto has become the clear market leader in hypervisor-based disaster recovery and there is a broad use case for their technology, with many additional applications beyond DR. Growth capital will help Zerto scale the business and quickly advance new market opportunities.”

Oh yes? Zerto has recently added off-site backup to its product portfolio. We wrote about virtual machine conversion between different hypervisors here. It would seem Zerto is seeing its technology as a means of transferring virtualised workloads in an any-to-any fashion between hypervisor environments and public and private clouds. DR is one use case for this but another could be to provide a service chasing the best price/performance from amongst public cloud service providers (CSPs) and moving workloads from one to another to achieve that.

CSPs could use the technology to move workloads in a follow-the-sun fashion too. The company says its “Cloud Fabric strategy [offers] enterprises and CSPs complete choice for operating virtualised workflows in any datacenter environment.”

It has opened offices outside the USA, in the UK and Australia, and we can look forward, we think, to both EMEA and AsiaPac office presence, with the company talking about “huge international growth and pent-up customer demand.”

The VCs will be looking for an exit with a valuation of - we estimate - $300 million or more. Ziv Kedem, Zerto CEO and co-founder, said:

“At a time when the market is moving to software-defined ‘everything,’ Zerto offers crucial building blocks of the software-defined datacenter, namely virtualised disaster recovery, migration and workload mobility solutions. With our platform, companies can port their data to any cloud, on any hypervisor. Our ‘Cloud Fabric’ vision is a huge leap forward for IT, and shows we’re continuing to innovate and stay ahead of the market.”

El Reg’s storage desk thinks Zerto, notwithstanding its stated intention, still looks to be a solid acquisition for any storage software company. Think CA, Symantec, or CSP- and hypervisor-agnostic storage system supplier; or think Dell, HDS, and NetApp. It looks a great tuck-in acquisition.

Is Zerto dreaming of acquisitive electronic sheep? ®

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