Veritas lands AWS, Microsoft Azure cloud deals as it revamps under CEO Coleman

Veritas is integrating its data management and backup storage software with Amazon Web Services and Microsoft Azure. The pivot comes as Veritas eyes growth from companies scurrying to meet the EU's data protection regulations.

Veritas, the data management and storage vendor sold by Symantec in 2015, is holding a coming out party as it forges ties with Amazon Web Services and Microsoft Azure and steps up its product cadence.

The company announced a multi-year partnership with Microsoft to use Veritas' Enterprise Vault cloud management and governance tools on Azure. The Microsoft partnership gives Veritas more hooks into hybrid cloud approaches among the enterprise as NetBackup 8.0 and Backup Exec 16 integrate with Azure.

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Veritas CEO Bill Coleman

In addition, the Azure deal comes a week after Veritas said its 360 Data Management platform will be available on Amazon Web Services (AWS). AWS and Veritas also integrated a bevy of tools to mix and match public cloud infrastructure with enterprise data centers. For instance, Veritas Resiliency Platform, InfoScale, Access and NetBackup and Backup Exec will be available on AWS.

We caught up with Veritas CEO Bill Coleman to talk about the company's move to partner with public cloud providers and plans for the future. Symantec sold Veritas to the Carlyle Group in 2015 for $7.4 billion. Here are a few highlights of the Coleman chat:

Importance of the cloud. Coleman said the company is looking to embrace the cloud and give its customers a choice of "any combination of clouds and data centers." In addition, embracing the cloud also means that Veritas will have subscription and consumption-based business models. On the product front, Coleman, who previously led BEA Systems, said Veritas added an API framework to NetBackup and integrated it throughout the portfolio. "We're moving forward into the public cloud as a full element of our product offering," said Coleman. "The cloud is central to our strategy."

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GDPR, or General Data Protection Regulation. In my conversation with Coleman, GDPR, which is a European Union regulation governing where data resides and protections, came up repeatedly. And for good reason. Veritas is pivoting to be a data management company. And GDPR will be a significant change because companies will have to know where their data is at any given time. "We will have an integrated product for visualizing data no matter where it is," said Coleman, who also noted that Veritas is looking to automate the process.

"Over the next year we want to totally automate migration and discovery for GDPR in all environments. And it has to be automated. Anytime there is a breach you're fined for every incident," explained Coleman. "Veritas did an analysis for our own data. We have to spend millions of dollars on GDPR. So it's a big deal and it's going to take us a lot of work to do ourselves. We get to be our own customer one."

GDPR, which goes into effect May 2018, can be a catalyst for Veritas if it can help customers understand all of their data and then manage it, said Coleman, who likened GDPR to Sarbanes-Oxley -- a financial services regulation that essentially became global.

The business model. Like most software companies, Veritas is transitioning to a subscription-based model. The company has had subscription offerings for about nine months so it's too early to get a good read on how fast the business model will shift.

Hybrid cloud. "We haven't seen any customer go cloud first with traditional processing applications," said Coleman. "But large customers are just getting to the point where they are moving mission critical applications to the cloud. We anticipate most large enterprises will be hybrid cloud."

Challenges ahead. Coleman said that Veritas has the challenge of being viewed as a legacy company, but that can be an opportunity too given there's a footprint of customers. Execution is also a challenge, but Coleman said Veritas has been releasing new products quickly and becoming more efficient. GDPR and Veritas public cloud integrations will go a long way to courting decision makers. Another opportunity for Veritas is that it is independent and not selling its software with hardware. "We have the most enterprise customer data under management and we're trusted," said Coleman. "Being Switzerland is a good position for our customers."

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