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Actifio ramps up in Australia with virtualised data management

Data management company, Actifio, has hit Australia with a platform which, according to its founder and CEO, Ash Ashutosh, is a radically simplified system for managing the ‘explosion of data growth’ now confronting enterprises around the world.

Actifio, which launched in the United States in 2009, established its first office in Australia earlier this year, and says it is attracting keen interest from potential customers for its protection and availability storage platform.

Ashutosh told iTWire that Actifio’s approach is similar to how VMware virtualises the OS - Actifio virtualises the core data management primitives of copy, store, move and restore into a single, efficient platform, enabling multiple data management applications to leverage the same data and operations.

“We use what we call Virtual Data Pipeline technology to integrate data de-duplication, compression, encryption and bandwidth optimisation with storage virtualisation, transforming individual silos of point tools into a comprehensive data management solution,” Ashutosh said.

“Effectively, Actifio decouples the management of data from the underlying infrastructure, similar to the server virtualisation paradigm. The results are radical simplicity, unprecedented agility and up to an order of magnitude lower cost.”

Ashutosh said, "Everywhere we saw evidence of this data explosion, and the need to shrink the storage footprint.” “In other words, the amount of data most companies accumulate is increasing fast. But why should they be spending money to store so many copies of the same stuff?

“We don't sell disk storage so our customers can use whatever storage vendor they like — IBM, HP, EMC, NetApp, and so on.”

Rather than stashing 15 or more copies of the same file, Ashtosh said Actifio's magic number is 1.6.

"You can keep more copies, if you want," Ashutosh said, "but that's the number of copies you need to make the file available everywhere, and the management overhead of keeping track of all those copies is huge."

According to Ashutosh, who sold his previous data management company AppIQ to HP in 2005, the data management market is currently valued at around $34 billion.

In the US, Actifio’s clients include entertainment and media giant, Time-Warner, banks, manufacturers, university and scientific research organisations.

In the Asian market, Actifio has adopted a partner model for developing business in the region, primarily in Japan, Korea and greater-China.

Australia and New Zealand are now in its sights and Ashutosh is in Australia meeting prospective customers.
Ashutosh told iTWire that there are currently around nine “interested parties” - and some in Asia – “seriously considering” Actifio and its partners to assist with their storage and data goals.
Meanwhile, Actifio recently announced a partnership with IBM to help service providers deliver cloud data management services cost effectively. The solution from Actifio and IBM is deigned to enable providers to offer multiple cloud services -- including instant backup, disaster recovery, business continuity, and test and development -- from a single virtualised platform while reducing capital expenses by up to 90 percent.
The key Australian reseller for Actifio is currently IBM systems integration partner ISI.

ISI CEO, Steven Hedge, told iTWire that the company was “very pleased to be Actifio's lead reseller in the region.”

Hedge had a previous working relationship with Ashutosh back in the early 2000s and travelled to the US last year to lobby Actifio to invest and focus on the Australia market.

Hedge, who was a key in the set up of EMC in Australia in the late 80s, told iTWire why Actifio was a priority for ISI. He said he immediately saw the potential for Actifio in the Australian market, similar to that of EMC when it first established here, and predicted a similar level of success.

"The only difference about Actifio's opportunity is that EMC simply presented themselves as an alternative to existing manufacturers whereas Actifio really solves a huge problem while simplifying the process - the approach is truly unique."


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