Features

Commvault scripts a compelling plot

CommVault, the company that has made its name selling data backup and recovery solutions and has forged successful technology relationships with leading vendors including EMC, McAfee, Dell, Microsoft, Oracle is now looking at a more aggressive act in the Middle East market. The vendor provides solutions that enable a better way to manage data growth, lower costs, and reduce risk using a single, unified architecture, a value proposition that companies in a recession hit era will find compelling.
 
In the past few months, the company has brought on a new GM and a few key people to set up a stronger regional presence. The company recently moved in to an office at Dubai Internet City, and with an office base in the region now, it is looking to increase marketing activities and investments in the region, including partner and customer outreach and events.  
 
Hani Esber, who took over as General Manager for CommVault in the Middle East and North Africa regions about 6 months ago says the company is now in the process of  expanding channel network as well as look at substantially broadening customer base. Hani brings over nine years of experience working in the region’s software industry to his job and prior to his current role, was Sun’s territory sales manager, looking after the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Pakistan and Gulf for the past six years.

Hani says, “We are looking to expand our footprint of partners for MENA in a considered and meaningful way to ensure that customers around the key Gulf countries have a local channel partner whom they can talk to about CommVault. We are especially looking for partners who have experience and skills in the storage area and who might already be promoting complimentary products that are a good fit with CommVault.”
CommVault has seen its channel sales increase substantially and the company is now showing more commitment to channel development and is hoping that its channel partners will continue to see healthy margins selling its products. One of the aspects the company is focusing on in channel training. And it is also expecting its distributors to make investments such as a POC.
He adds, “We are 100% committed to our channel partners, and in these challenging economic times, we are giving our partners an innovative new software release that will help them address their customers’ key pain points of cost, inefficiency and complexity.  At the same time, our existing partners now have 300 new reasons to revisit old accounts and customers to upsell.”
With today’s economic climate and many vendors and partners feeling the pressure, CommVault is continuing its business as usual. In fact, CommVault believes this scenario could in fact fuel the company’s growth as companies look for cost effective solutions.

Hani says, “CommVault’s software suite actually really fits what companies are looking for in this economic slowdown.  With the continued economic uncertainty, companies are looking to consolidate their IT and rein in short-term and long-term expenditures.  Our latest software release focuses on removing inefficiency, and simplifying data and information management so that companies can demonstrably reduce their IT storage expenditure and ongoing maintenance costs. For instance, with our latest software release, Simpana 8, we are able to save companies as much as 40% in a year on storage-related spend on infrastructure, labour and devices.”
 
CommVault has recently announced the availability of its Simpana 8 data management software and has made it clear that it’s committed to enabling its channel community right from the start. This is also an attempt to redeem the fact that the company wasn’t happy with its earlier channel push when Simpana 7 was released in 2007 and at least one senior executive has been quoted in a media report saying that this time around.
 
Simpana 8 targets existing and new enterprise data management users. The goal with Simpana 8 is to attract existing Simpana users in addition to new ones.
 
Hani adds, “Just as customers are looking to reduce cost and risk in this current economic climate, our partners are also gearing themselves towards providing solutions with clear ROI and proven lower cost of ownership.  Our latest release, Simpana 8 is the largest software release that we have ever done, with over 300 new features. ” 
 
Simpana 8 offers users a better data management, backup, recovery, and data deduplication experience. The company claims this is the first solution of its kind to feature embedded global data deduplication capabilities too. Simpana 8’s predecessor had only file-level deduplication. The new version offers block-level compression that runs on a media server and begins with a simple compression algorithm and completes with full deduplication on secondary disk storage subsystems. It then archives the backup data to tape.

Simpana 8, CommVault claims is designed to help businesses simplify their recovery management practices, to eliminate redundant data, and to provide better management and protection for virtual environments, along with better content organization. It’s new recovery management tool works not only on data center clients but on remote office desktops as well as mobile devices by using a light agent. That agent performs an initial full backup of the device and then replicates any incremental data changes back to main data centre servers.
 
Hani adds, “Our product has applications across all industries whether they are finance, telco, government or manufacturing. Our customers come from across all the industries but with a similar aim of reducing the complexity in their storage systems and thereby trimming costs.”
 
Some of the other technology highlights of Simpana 8 include
 

  • Simpana 8 also adds snapshot capability that can potentially eliminate daily backup windows. SnapBackup Enabler is qualified to operate with both EMC and NetApp storage systems for point-in-time data recovery. For example, system administrators can create an Exchange mail recovery box on an EMC primary storage system, allowing Simpana 8 to recover from disk an individual user’s mailbox — down to an individual e-mail.
  •  Simpana 8 also includes virtual server management for backup and recovery, including incremental file-level backup. The feature also includes auto discovery of virtual machines.
  •  Data recovery options range from single files to virtual disks to an entire virtual machine. The software also restores from virtual systems to physical servers, or across virtual platforms, such as recovering a VMware image directly to a Microsoft Hyper-V system.
  •  Simpana’s new Content Director tool allows administrators to perform keyword searches for eDiscovery functions such as creating legal holds for civil cases or regulatory compliance. The tool allows single policies to be set across an enterprise in order to tag key words for records management.

The company claims that Businesses that use this software will see a return on investment in the form of reduced administrative costs, as well as less risk associated with having to move information back and forth between workstations. The cornerstone of CommVault’s strategy has been to reduce costs for users of its products and which continues to reap a good harvest for the company.
 
Hani adds, “After more than ten years since CommVault first debuted its software, it is still the only company to offer a single platform approach to data and information management.   Our customers license modules for backup and recovery, archiving or replication which are all built on a single code base and common platform.  All the modules ‘talk’ to each other seamlessly and instead of managing each module separately as customers would have to if they had bought a different product for each function, customers are able to manage all the functions with just 1 management console and GUI.”
 
This has a positive impact on a customer’s IT department – fewer resources are needed to manage the storage, fewer time needs to be spent on manual intervention, scripting and training courses.  The company claims that customers have been proven to save up to 40% in management costs in under one year.  More immediately, the single architecture enables companies to immediately reclaim space on primary storage and reduce offsite storage by up to 90% and eliminate up to half their tape drives. That is a proposition that customers will find difficult to turn down at any time.
 
 

The data management vendor is now set for growing its Middle East business with in-country channel expansion across the GCC for pushing its products

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