Acronis has shored up $250 million in new funds, with plans to tap the monies to expand its product support and partner network. It also is open to further acquisitions if potential candidates can drive the company's goal of providing deeper and broader data protection.
Its latest funding round was led by private equity firm CVC Capital Partners, which dished out some $220 million, with other investors contributing the remaining $30 million, said Acronis' founder and CEO Serguei Beloussov. He and with his partners remain the company's largest shareholders.
This marked the Singapore-based data security vendor's third, and biggest, funding round that involved external investors. It secured $147 million from investors led by Goldman Sach in 2019, following its first round in 2004 when it raised $11 million.
Speaking to ZDNet in a video call, Beloussov said the new funds would help support the company's growth across several areas, including bolstering its partner ecosystem and product portfolio.
In particular, Acronis would look to support a larger number of workload types on its flagship offering, Cyber Protect. The data security platform currently is optimised to secure 30 different workload types including Linux, VMWare, and Microsoft Hyper-V.
"We want to extend [this so] support is deeper and broader, and we can protect our customers' compete infrastructure," Beloussov said, adding that the vendor hoped to add application workloads such as Netsuite and Salesforce, to its portfolio.
The funds injection also would drive research and development efforts to integrate machine learning and artificial intelligence (AI) capabilities with its network and security infrastructure, he said.
The aim here was to enhance the platform's ability to detect, predict, and prevent potential system downtime, whether this was due to security attacks, natural disaster, or hardware and software faults, he noted.
Machine learning also could be leveraged to help network administrators speed up their decision-making and more quickly resolve problems, he added. In some cases, it could do so without any human intervention and with much faster and better results, he said.
The technology also could be tapped to improve the quality and speed of Acronis' product development, Beloussov said. Noting that the company had a product development team of 1,600, including 1,000 engineers, he said this number was not always big enough to support a company of Acronis' size.
Hence, a good way to augment and advance such human resources was through machine-assisted intelligence, he said.
The CEO also was open to making further acquisitions if potential candidates could help Acronis provide broader and deeper protection as well as better enable its partner ecosystem, which included managed services providers (MSPs), telcos, cloud providers, and cloud services aggregators.
The vendor currently has 10,000 active MSPs on its network, in addition to another 5,000 that were registered but not actively engaged.
The company would be looking to grow this number with the new funds, which also would be used to provide more training and certification programmes for its partners. Here, special focus would go towards Asia-Pacific and Japan, where the service provider markets were growing rapidly but were less developed compared to the US, Beloussov said.
He also revealed plans to expand in China, where Acronis would soon open its first office--likely in Beijing or Shanghai--and a data centre.
The vendor currently operates 26 data centres worldwide and plans to increase this number to 111. Earlier this year, it launched a site in Bhutan and planned to open data centres in India and Indonesia.
The latest funds, which Acronis said pushed its value to more than $2.5 billion, also would be tapped to grow its engineering team in key markets, including Singapore, Israel, and Bulgaria.