Disaster recovery core to 'sound' IT plan

Proper disaster recovery plans need to be an integral part of businesses, especially given the challenging economic times, says new Acronis CEO Jason Donahue.
Written by Vivian Yeo, Contributor

Disaster recovery planning is a "core fundamental requirement of a sound IT plan" for enterprises today, according to backup and disaster recovery specialist Acronis.

The company's new CEO Jason Donahue told ZDNet Asia in a phone interview Wednesday that increasingly, many customers are not willing to risk a "catastrophic loss of data" that could put them out of business. Donahue joined Acronis in October from ClearApp, where he had served as president and CEO.

He noted that data proliferation and regulatory requirements worldwide are also driving greater focus on proper disaster recovery planning and management.

Donahue said: "Many of the industries and sectors we deal with have service level agreements that they have to provide to their customers for services and capabilities… Having a strong disaster recovery plan is really essential to guarantee those service level requirements."

Given the current recessionary environment, he added that having adequate backup and disaster recovery plans would be a priority for businesses. "When economic times are tight, the last thing that a business wants to risk is a catastrophic failure in their information and their core systems that run the business," he said.

"We are seeing are some delays in large purchases and large transactions in our business, and I think that's consistent across [the] enterprise software [industry]," said Donahue. "Our expectation is that…while there's a lot of fear out there, the reality is that the economy is going to keep moving forward. As things start to stabilize, probably over the next couple of quarters, any of these deals that are being delayed are going to get back to their [usual momentum]."

Eyeing Symantec's turf
According to the CEO, Acronis is targeting new releases in May or June 2009 that he said, will provide central policy management across large pools of machines and incorporate de-duplication technology.

"Over time, we see de-duplication becoming more of a commoditized capability but the market is still probably a few years [away] from that," he noted.

These new capabilities will put Acronis in "a better position to take market share" from Symantec, the company's direct backup and disaster recovery competitor in the large enterprise space, said Donahue.

On the business front, the seven-year-old company will continue to expand in key established markets in the region including Hong Kong, Japan, Korea, Singapore and Taiwan, as well as build channel relationships and invest in research and development, he added.

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