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Cloud-to-cloud backup picks up steam with acquisition, new features

The cloud-to-cloud backup universe expanded over the past week when cloud file sync vendor eFolder acquired Cloudfinder and Spanning Cloud Apps added features for its backup.

eFoder acquired Sweden-based Cloudfinder last week for an undisclosed price. Cloudfinder backs up data stored in Microsoft Office 365, Google Apps and Salesforce. Cloudfinder joins an eFolder lineup of services that includes file synch and share, DR/business continuity, and backup.

eFolder operates its cloud out of data centers in Atlanta, Salt Lake City and Colonna, British Columbia. Until now, CloudFinder used the Amazon cloud to store customer data. Ted Hulsy, efolder VP of marketing, said efolder will migrate CloudFinder customer data from Amazon to the eFolder cloud, in similar fashion as it did after acquiring sync and share vendor Anchor and moved its customers’ data from the SoftLayer cloud.

Unlike Cloudfinder, eFolder does not sell directly to users. It will also turn Cloudfinder into a 100-percent channel play, according to eFolder VP of marketing Ted Hulsy.

Hulsy said eFolder will continue to sell its services separately, although its service provider customers will eventually be able to manage all from the eFolder partner portal.

Cloudfinder launched in early 2013 with backup for Office 365, which remains its most popular product.

“We’re all studying how the landscape is shifting to a cloud-centric future with the proliferation of mobile devices, and we see the writing on the wall that traditional offerings have to transform [to the cloud],” Hulsy said. “Cloudfinder was an ideal company to acquire because of that.”

While Cloudfinder is smaller than cloud-to-cloud backup vendors Backupify and Spanning, Hulsy said the service will benefit from eFolder’s bulk and channel. He said eFolder has more than 120 employees and 2,200 partners worldwide, and has raised $26 million in funding.

“Our product vision is to build out really robust infrastructure of cloud services,” he said. “We’re talking about hundreds of applications over time.”

Spanning this week launched Spanning Backup for Salesforce1 Mobile, allowing Salesforce admins to monitor backups and restores remotely. The Spanning application runs on the Salesforce 1 app that is available on the Apple iOS and Google Android operating systems.

Last week Spanning added the capability for  Spanning Backup for Salesforce customers to restore data objects directly from the Salesforce user interface. This lets users restore their own records without IT intervention. They can go back to previous versions of Salesforce data objects such as Accounts, Opportunities and Contacts.  This allows them to restore similarly to how they do it in Google Apps , with each user responsible for his or her own data.

“Companies want to put data recovery into the hands of people who own their data, and they want granular point in time recovery,” Spanning CEO Jeff Erramouspe said. “Salesforce is one big database carved up into individual pieces, where in Google Apps each user owns his data – email, Drive documents, calendar – on an individual basis.”

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