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With unicorn status, Acronis funding to aid acquisitions, R&D

There’s a new unicorn in town.

Cyber protection provider Acronis today closed a $147 million funding round, led by Goldman Sachs, at a valuation of more than $1 billion.

Founder and CEO Serguei Beloussov said the Acronis funding will help the company complete acquisitions and enhance its research and development.

Acronis, founded in Singapore in 2003, has shifted from a backup-heavy product portfolio to a more comprehensive cyber protection platform.

“There are a lot of different things you can do in cyber protection,” Beloussov said.

That platform, which comprises data protection and cybersecurity, offers safety, accessibility, privacy, authenticity and security. Current and forthcoming Acronis cyber protection products include:

• Acronis Cyber Platform, which enables third-party developers to customize, extend and integrate cyber protection into their products;
• Acronis Cyber Infrastructure, which provides a secure environment for running cyber protection products and data storage, and is now available;
• Acronis Cyber Architecture, which guarantees privacy of data and gives customers full control of data location; and
• Acronis Cyber Cloud, through which service providers and enterprise IT can deliver cyber protection services to end users, and is now available.

Acronis products protect workloads in physical environments such as Windows Server and Linux, virtual platforms such as VMware vSphere and Microsoft Hyper-V, and cloud-based services including Office 365 and G Suite.

Beloussov said Acronis wants to add protection for about 20 to 30 types of workloads that it doesn’t already offer, such as Salesforce.

“It’s a very universal problem,” Beloussov said. “Every workload in the world needs to be protected.”

The Acronis funding is part of a trend in the data protection industry, as several vendors have received large investments in the last year. Druva closed a $130 million round in June. In January, Rubrik received $261 million and Veeam picked up $500 million. Cohesity and Actifio pocketed sizable funding in 2018.

Multiple acquisitions on the horizon

Acronis claims 500,000 business customers and 5 million consumer users.

Beloussov did not disclose the exact valuation. The only other previous Acronis funding intake came in 2004. Beloussov said Acronis sold part of its business at that time for about $11 million.

Serguei Beloussov, CEO of Acronis

Serguei Beloussov

“We’ve never needed cash,” Beloussov said, adding that the company has been profitable.

But now it’s looking to speed up its growth both in house and from outside.

Acronis has 1,400 employees across 32 sites in 18 countries. The funding enables Acronis to expand its engineering team in Singapore, Bulgaria and Arizona. Beloussov did not give a target number for new employees as a result of today’s Acronis funding round, but said the company could potentially hire at each of its offices.

The Acronis funding will also help the company build additional data centers.

Regarding outside help, in July, Beloussov said Acronis would make at least three acquisitions this year. Today he said that’s still the plan. He noted that he wants technology that can completely integrate into the Acronis Cyber Platform, as it’s important for users to have a single suite. In addition, Acronis is looking for broader workload support and for acquisitions to extend what the company currently offers, all within the focus of cyber protection, Beloussov said.

Beloussov also said in July that Acronis is not pursuing an IPO at the moment, as it’s in the middle of major product launches. He said, however, that it’s highly likely within five years.

Acronis will also use the funding to quicken business growth in North America in partnership with Acronis SCS, an independent software vendor and distributor for the public sector that was incorporated in 2018.

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