Online Backup Startup Signs Global Pact with GE

A 25-person company located in a small Utah town will now be backing up much of the data for a 300,000-employee global corporation-and for 170,000 other customers.

Berkeley Data Systems, of American Fork, Utah, has landed a rather large corporate fish. The 25-employee online storage backup company announced April 23 a multimillion-dollar contract to provide remote backup services to employees of General Electric worldwide.

The announcement of the contract follows the successful launch of the companys MozyPro online backup service for businesses, which took place quietly in December and was officially announced in April.

MozyPro offers the first 2GB of storage for no fee, and unlimited backup—which includes an unlimited number of restores—for $3.95 per month per PC or server, plus 50 cents per gigabyte of storage used per month. Users may select month-to-month or annual payment plans.

Measured by market capitalization, GE is currently the second-largest company in the world, with more than 300,000 employees. Fortune Magazine recently named GE the "Worlds Most Admired Company." The company produces aircraft engines, health care equipment, electric distribution and control equipment, generators and turbines, and locomotive and transportation equipment.

"GE did an amazing amount of due diligence," a Berkeley Data Systems spokesperson told eWEEK.

Since its release, MozyPro has acquired more than 3,200 business customers in viral fashion, with no little or no advertising, CEO and founder Josh Coates told eWEEK.

"Weve changed the economics and usability of enterprise backup with our proprietary software technology," Coates said. "The result is a global contract with GE for backup service, and more than 3,000 other businesses deployed since the first of the year."

The company started its regular online backup for individual consumers last April, and now claims to have more than 165,000 customers in that part of the business.

Traditional enterprise-class disaster-recovery solutions are expensive and complex, Coates said. "Today, more businesses are looking for a secure off-site backup solution because of government regulations, such as HIPAA [Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act]."

/zimages/5/28571.gifClick here to read more about Berkeley Data Systems unlimited online storage.

MozyPro offers easy-to-use enterprise-quality features at dramatically reduced prices—10 times less, the company claims—than most conventional server storage, Coates said. The service provides a "very sophisticated" multitenant administrative console that includes reporting and configuration tools to simplify deployment and centralize management, he said.

Bandwidth throttling and near-continuous data protection allow backups to take place quietly in the background. "Military-grade encryption ensures [that] the data is protected before it is sent to Berkeley Datas world-class data center," Coates said.

MozyPro is competing with more established companies as Iron Mountain, EVault and Carbonite. Google and Microsoft are also planning to offer similar services.

"The new relationship between Berkeley Data Systems and GE will be a mutually beneficial one," storage analyst Henry Baltazar of The 451 Group, in San Francisco, told eWEEK.

"Berkeley responded to several requests from GE on product features, and theyve made the storage service a lot better," Baltazar said. "For example, the secure keys that are being used do not allow the storage company to see any of the data it is storage and securing, so that if there is a disagreement of any sort, there is never any threat to the data.

"Also, the administrative [granularity] thats being used is good, too, because it allows middle managers in such a huge company to make decisions on what should be backed up. The corporate office might want certain data backed up each night, but all those smaller and remote offices also will have a say in what will be backed up," Baltazar said.

In 2006, Mozy received the PC Magazine Editors Choice Award. Resellers and service providers may contact Berkeley Data directly for information on its reseller and business development opportunities, the company said.

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Chris Preimesberger

Chris J. Preimesberger

Chris J. Preimesberger is Editor-in-Chief of eWEEK and responsible for all the publication's coverage. In his 13 years and more than 4,000 articles at eWEEK, he has distinguished himself in reporting...