It’s been just over a year since HYCU raised $87.5 million of Series A funding. The company has now announced a further $53 million in series B, with a few clues as to what this additional money might be used for.
In a statement issued on 9th June 2022, HYCU announced a further $53 million in series B funding led by Acrew Capital and all series A investors. More notably, though, Atlassian Ventures and Cisco Investments also participated. The press release highlights on-premises, hybrid cloud and a “new developer-led SaaS service” – more on this in a moment.
I spoke to HYCU CEO Simon Taylor, who indicated that HYCU was approached for investment rather than looking for additional funding. With revenues tripling in the past 12 months and year-on-year bookings at 150%, it’s clear that investors see an opportunity for future growth and expansion of the business. Mr Taylor was tight-lipped about what that might be but reading between the lines of the press release we can see a few pointers.
First, there’s a reference to a new SaaS service, which the company is on track to deliver by the end of 2022. Second, Theresia Gouw joins the board, bringing experience from SaaS providers. Third, Atlassian Ventures and Cisco Investments have invested. Both companies have many SaaS solutions (think of Jira, Trello, Confluence etc).
It’s blindingly obvious then that SaaS data protection is a big part of HYCU’s future.
HYCU already offers data protection as a service within the public cloud. We’ve discussed the technology over many blog posts and podcasts, all of which are available through our HYCU Microsite. In this instance, the “as-a-Service” model protects traditional workloads such as virtual instances and Kubernetes.
The greater challenge for all data protection vendors is how to efficiently cover the vast expanse of SaaS platforms. A typical approach is to head for the “low hanging fruit” and integrate protection with the largest SaaS platforms such as Microsoft’s Office 365 and Salesforce.
While the 80/20 rule generally applies in this scenario, the SaaS market is a moving target. New solutions enter the market every week, and it’s impossible to know which ones will develop into the “mega-SaaS” platforms and which will die off naturally. So, how does a vendor like HYCU decide which vendor to support?
Two other SaaS challenges also spring to mind. First, the SaaS platform vendors generally implement bespoke data structures with little or no exposure to the outside world. Data protection is only possible through advertised APIs, which may or may not offer complete protection. More important, these APIs need to provide granular restore capability. No customer wants to restore its entire data set but perhaps replace individual records that have been deleted or inadvertently modified.
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Second, there’s the question of structural changes. Vendors like Salesforce and Atlassian can (and do) change internal data structures as new features and functionality are brought to market. How do SaaS data protection solutions manage this challenge if, for instance, data has to be rolled back to a point before a major SaaS platform feature update?
It’s clear that the long-term protection of SaaS workloads is not straightforward.
The global SaaS market (if this article is in any way accurate) is set to reach $716 billion by 2028 with a CAGR of 27.5%. This represents a significant amount of data that must be protected. As businesses make more use of SaaS in place of traditional on-premises solutions, data will become more diversified and fragmented across many platforms. Protecting each solution individually represents a logistical challenge. There is also little, or no opportunity at that point to do data mining or even understand the data landscape within an organisation. Therefore, some centralised platform is required. The big question to answer is exactly how this can be achieved when, by definition, all SaaS platforms are unique in their data structures and workflows.
The Architect’s View®
The size of the opportunity in the SaaS data protection market is enormous. This challenge isn’t just about protecting assets (which is a problem in itself) but also looking at how all the data assets for an organisation can be identified, protected and potentially exploited. We’ve talked a lot over recent years about protecting heterogeneous environments and multi-cloud. Perhaps now is the time to bring SaaS-solution protection into the mix and understand which vendors can address the needs of customers across the entire data and application landscape.
We’re looking forward to learning exactly what HYCU has up its proverbial sleeve. As soon as we know, we’ll let you have our opinion.
Copyright (c) 2007-2022 – Post #db4f – Brookend Ltd, first published on https://www.architecting.it/blog, do not reproduce without permission. HYCU Inc, is a client of Brookend Ltd, however this is not sponsored content. HYCU has no editorial rights or prior access to this content.