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Actifio banks on IBM giving it a PAS with service providers

IBM and Actifio struck up a partnership this week that startup Actifio hopes will bring its Protection and Availability (PAS) platform to the cloud and IBM sees as a way to fill data protection needs for service providers.

IBM and Actifio said they will offer bundles to cloud service providers and VARs. The packages include Actifio’s PAS data protection with IBM DS3500 Express, IBM Storwize V7000, XIV Gen3 and SAN Storage Volume Controller (SVC) systems.

IBM has its own backup, replication, disaster recovery and data management products, so it’s unclear why it needs Actifio. But Mike Mcclurg, IBM VP of global midmarket sales, said Actifio provides one tool to handle all those functions.

“We approach managed service providers form a business perspective,” he said. “How can a partnership with IBM grow their business? It’s challenging for managed service providers to find cost effective data solutions that requires cobbling together a lot of backup, replication, snapshot, and data management tools. Actifio is an elegant way of replacing a lot of technology and overlapping software products.”

Maybe the partnership is the beginning of a deeper relationship between the vendors. Actifio president Jim Sullivan is former VP of worldwide sales for IBM system storage. He maintains that the startup is keeping its partnership options open, but he is also counting on IBM to bring Actifio into deals the startup can’t land on its own.

“This is not an exclusive deal,” he said. “But we’re driving this with IBM. Showing up with service providers with IBM is a great opportunity for us to get reach and credibility.”

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