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August 26, 2011

On the Road With Panzura

As part of TMCnet.com's special On the Road series in San Jose, CA, TMC (News - Alert) CEO Rich Tehrani got to sit down with Howard Dratler, CEO of Panzura, a provider of cloud storage platforms.

Panzura has developed a cloud-enabled global platform that allows the highly-optimized use of cloud storage, both public and private, for enterprise-grade primary storage. The Panzura architecture is centrally managed, and operates in the same manner as a local network attached storage, or NAS, device, while managing all of the functions necessary for the global enterprise to realize the cost, capacity and flexibility benefits of the cloud.

“What we do is enable large enterprises and global enterprises to use the cloud very effectively and meet the requirements of performance, reliability, and security,” Dratler said.

Lately, cloud computing is a topic that has always been the talk of the world of Information Technology (IT). Almost every day there’s always news about cloud computing, both technologically and from a business aspect. Forester defines it as “standard of IT skills, such as software, application platform, or infrastructure, which is provided using Internet technology in a way self-service and pay-per-use.” Simply put, cloud computing is a technology that uses the Internet and central remote servers to maintain data and applications.

“I think for all companies that were working in and around cloud storage, the hype in many ways created a lot of interest in the cloud, but at the same time it created unreasonable expectations about how quickly enterprises might adopt,” said Dratler. “I think what we’re seeing now is, after a couple of years of not just hype, but companies really coming out with products that actually work and can be used by an enterprise and be used by the requirements that they do have for data storage.”

Products are coming to fruition and being put into production, notes Dratler, leading to a significant jump in companies looking to do projects that are cloud-based.

The blessing, notes Dratler, is there is a lot of enterprise interest in the cloud, however, the curse of it all is that it took longer.

For Panzura, being at the forefront of this jump in cloud-computing technology, particularly for the enterprise, means success as a company.

Panzura is backed by the Venture Capital firms Matrix Partners, Khosla Ventures, and Chevron (News - Alert) Technology Investments, putting them in a competitive position in the in the nascent cloud storage market.

“We work with all of the major cloud members that are out there,” said Dratler, talking about the storage and where it comes from.

“We’re making it more reliable, highly secure and allowing the enterprise to take advantage of the economic benefits of the cloud that have been promised, and they are now starting to see.”

Shopzilla, Inc., which manages a premier portfolio of online shopping brands including Bizrate, Beso, Shopzilla, TaDa, PrixMoinsCher, and SparDeinGeld tapped Panzura early in the year and has deployed Panzura Alto Cloud Controllers to more efficiently manage the regular data backup functions of multiple datacenters. Shopzilla chose the Panzura solution because of its unique capability to scale out multiple controllers in distributed geographic locations to form a single unified file system.

“As a premier online shopping destination, or priority is to ensure complete customer satisfaction across all of our brands. Yet our existing disk and tape backup systems in our different locations were creating increasing demands on IT staff cycles, and were not allowing us the efficiency or flexibility we needed,” said Burzin Engineer, VP of Technology at Shopzilla, Inc

The cloud storage market is showing exponential growth, and today’s enterprise organizations are quickly realizing the cost and complexity benefits of this new model with Panzura.

Want to learn more about the latest in communications and technology? Then be sure to attend ITEXPO West 2011, taking place Sept. 13-15, 2011, in Austin, Texas. ITEXPO (News - Alert) offers an educational program to help corporate decision makers select the right IP-based voice, video, fax and unified communications solutions to improve their operations. It's also where service providers learn how to profitably roll out the services their subscribers are clamoring for – and where resellers can learn about new growth opportunities. To register, click here.

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Michelle Amodio is a TMCnet contributor. She has helped promote companies and groups in all industries, from technology to banking to professional roller derby. She holds a bachelor's degree in Writing from Endicott College and currently works in marketing, journalism, and public relations as a freelancer.

Edited by Jennifer Russell
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