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Asigra's Next Attempt To Upend Backup and Recovery Pricing

Asigra Inc. is seeking to cut expensive, proprietary secondary storage arrays from the backup-and-recovery equation.

At the backup and recovery specialist's partner conference this week, the company introduced Asigra Software-Defined Data Protection, defined as an architecture to turn commodity infrastructure into scalable cloud backup storage.

Asigra compiled its code onto FreeBSD and provides it for free to service provider partners as an ISO image. "It's the first Software-Defined Data Protection platform," said Eran Farajun, executive vice president at Asigra. "It's the entire stack. It's not just the backup software, it's also the file system and the monitoring. We disintermediated the software that comes with these expensive storage arrays from HP, EMC and NetApp."

Asigra will support the stack, but doesn't plan to make money from it directly. "Our strategy is to help our partners free up dollars to generate more demand and win in the marketplace," Farajun said.

It's not the first time Toronto-based Asigra has tried to rock the boat in order to build market share. A year ago, Asigra decoupled backup pricing from recovery pricing -- offering very low prices for backing up data and charging considerably more for recovery. The company's bet was that the current pricing models are unsustainable given the exponential growth in data storage.

Farajun admits that Asigra expected to take a revenue hit at first from effectively lowering prices by 40 percent or more, but he said the company was pleasantly surprised: "Our revenues grew out of volume. We picked up new customers and our existing customers [increased] their existing licenses."

According to Farajun, some partners are turning that pricing model into additional business. "This is performance-based backup because the less recovery you do, the cheaper it is. The analytics about the recoveries is given to the customer and the partner can then help the customer improve their IT infrastructure," Farajun said.

Posted by Scott Bekker on June 18, 2014 at 12:07 PM


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