SaaS To The Rescue
Druva delivers data protection and management for the cloud era
Last year, the world experienced volatility as we have never seen. Business leaders had to adapt at a moment's notice, and stability was hard to come by. In 2021, we can see a return to normalcy, but the road ahead remains unpredictable. Many have doubts about making investments in certain resources or infrastructure. However, there remains one business trend that is certain to stay strong and thrive in 2021: cloud technology services.
It's no mystery why SaaS providers have emerged as a success story from 2020 and are poised to play an even larger role in the coming months. Cloud technology can give companies freedom and flexibility; workers are not restricted to a specific location, and critical functions can be securely performed from anywhere.
As the economy rebounds and businesses plot their next move, cloud technology should almost assuredly be a constant through it all. Business leaders need to know why everyone is bullish on SaaS in the coming year and whether or not they should take a leap into the cloud.
Cloud technology is nothing new, but the disruption resulting from COVID-19 showed the importance of having key services available online. During remote work, a number of SaaS standouts like Zoom and Slack kept teams in contact. Other business services that have not been obvious SaaS candidates — like a private branch exchange (PBX) phone system — suddenly became opportunities for cloud migration.
The success of cloud technology last year has now paved the way for SaaS to have its most impactful year yet. According to a report from Forrester, "the pandemic turbocharged the market by mid-2020, and Forrester now predicts that the global public cloud infrastructure market will grow 35 per cent to $120 billion in 2021."
Druva, a software company that sells cloud data backup services, recently announced that it has closed a $147 million round of capital. Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec (CDPQ), a group that manages Quebec’s pension fund, led the round, which also saw participation from Neuberger Berman. Prior investors including Atreides Management and Viking Global Investors put capital into the deal, as well.
Druva last raised a $130 million round led by Viking in mid-2019 at around a $1 billion valuation. At the time, Entrepreneur India commented that the company’s software-as-a-service (SaaS) backup service was tackling a large market.
Since then SaaS has continued to grow at a rapid clip, including a strong 2020 spurred on by COVID-19 boosting digital transformation efforts at companies of all sizes. In that context, it’s not surprising to see Druva put together a new capital round.
A recent tie-up between Dell and Druva, first reported in January of this year, was formally announced earlier this month. The selection of Druva by Dell could help provide the unicorn with a customer base to sell into for some time. Entrepreneur India wrote about Druva earlier this year, during the reporting process the company said that it had almost tripled its annual revenue in three years.
Its new round did include some secondary shares, which Druva chief development officer Milind Borate described. He explained that some of the secondary sales were due to some prior funds reaching their end-of-life cycle. Borate stressed that his backers are working to do what’s best for the company instead of merely maximizing their returns during a joint interview.
With refreshed accounts, a market moving in its direction, and some early investor relieved in its latest investment the company has quarters worth of time to play with. Still, Borate did stress that its new financing round did select investors that he said is building a long-term position.
The firm has already requested shares in Druva’s eventual IPO.
Every startup that raises capital tells the media that they are going to use the funds to expand their staff, double down on their tech and, often, invest in their go-to-market (GTM) motion. Druva is no exception, but its CTO told that the company currently has over 200 open GTM positions. That’s quite a few. Presumably that spend will help the company keep its growth rate strong in percentage terms as it does.
This is yet another growth round for a late-stage, enterprise-facing software company. But it’s also a round into a company that had to move its operations to the United States when it was founded, at the behest of its investors per its chief executive officer and founder Jaspreet Singh. And Druva has done some pretty neat cloud work, to ensure that it can defend software-like margins despite material storage loads.
Druva was founded in Pune, India in 2008 by Jaspreet Singh, Milind Borate and Ramani Kothmandaraman.
Druva delivers data protection and management for the cloud era. Druva Cloud Platform is built on AWS and offered as-a-Service; delivering globally accessible, infinitely scalable and completely autonomous enterprise data resiliency. Druva’s patented cloud architecture transforms backup data into an asset, making it more open and accessible so customers can streamline governance, improve cyber resiliency, and gain critical insights to uncover opportunities and expedite decision making.
Borate believes that as enterprises undertake digital transformation initiatives, the cloud is increasingly seen as a way to drive innovation, enhance the customer experience, power collaboration, and ensure compliance. The shift to cloud as the de-facto environment for business will only accelerate in the years to come. As the category leader, with the most comprehensive workload coverage and extended time to develop and innovate in the cloud, Druva is ideally positioned to help companies successfully enter the cloud era through radically simple data protection and management.
Till date, the company has raised $475 million. These have been used to fuel growth, expand the reach of Druva Cloud Platform into strategic markets and broaden the company’s global routes to market, with plans to expand headcount across all departments and explore new reseller partnerships and agreements
He shares, “Druva has revolutionized data protection in the cloud era. With no dependency on hardware, we move faster to solve customer issues, minimize reliance on supply chains, and protect companies while their workforce is dispersed. As businesses are managing exponential growth of data, they are also confronting risks that have nearly doubled. Druva has already helped thousands of organizations navigate their cloud migrations, protect their workforce, and ensure compliance with ever-increasing data regulations. With the ability to deliver faster time to value and help businesses manage, protect, and govern critical data during their digital transformation efforts, Druva Cloud Platform’s customer base has expanded substantially, while the adoption of multiple Druva Cloud Platform products has increased by 50 per cent. In the last year, the company’s data under management has grown by more than 40 per cent.”
The global pandemic took the world by storm. As office doors closed, multi-year digital transformation plans accelerated and became business-critical overnight. In a rush to stand up remote work support, organizations flocked to the cloud at a speed and scale never seen before.
“What did the 2020 market dynamics mean for Druva and our customers? Enterprises had to quickly move workloads to cloud environments, adopt SaaS solutions, and combat ever-rising cyber threats. These unique market conditions required a very specific skill set and expertise to help organizations navigate this moment and emerge stronger than before. As a SaaS solution, we are ideally designed to quickly scale for such times of changing organizational needs and with no required hardware or software, businesses can deploy our technology in as little as 15 minutes,” Borate commented.
Druva has thousands of customers worldwide, including over 50 of the Fortune 500. Customers span across a range of industries including healthcare, manufacturing, media and entertainment, financial services, education and technology. Druva customers include industry leaders and pioneers such as GameStop, Marriott, NASA, National Cancer Institute, and Regeneron Pharmaceuticals.
“Druva is now focused on further accelerating growth as customers demand alternatives to aging hardware and software-based legacy solutions. We have always endeavored and will continue to enable every enterprise to accelerate growth and make better informed critical business decisions based on simple and reliable data protection and management mechanisms. We want to make sure that our customers have their data protected, always managed and available. Not just for the next 2 years, but even beyond we want to ensure that the Total Cost of Ownership is reduced, the power of the cloud is maximized and the value of data is unlocked,” he further shared.