Box Launches Global Cloud Network For Businesses


Cloud storage company Box on Monday unveiled a worldwide content-sharing network aimed at enterprises in need of fast data transfer.

Called Box Accelerator, the network includes nine new points of presence (PoPs) in North America, Europe, Australia, Asia and South America as well as new network optimization technology.

Box, of Los Altos, Calif., developed the network in part to accommodate its international presence, as 50 percent of it activity occurs outside the U.S., said Stefan Apitz, Box vice president of operations.

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"There is a clear requirement for us to support global demand with infrastructure and operational capacity as needed," Apitz said in an interview with CRN. "We need to keep a close eye on our users' experience, and speed is a big deal."

Apitz said Box will "piggyback" on cloud networks from Amazon, Microsoft Azure or other cloud-infrastructure providers if they offer the best service. "Where we find we can do it better, we can transport data through our own co-locations."

Accelerator also addresses the growing demand for content sharing in businesses, Aaron Levie, Box co-founder and CEO, said.

"We’ve introduced an enterprise architecture that scales with the pace of today’s business and addresses the explosive growth of content creation and sharing," Levie said in a statement.

Box, which began as a consumer-focused service, has moved toward the enterprise market and lists more than 125,000 businesses as customers.

The Accelerator network, although free, will serve enterprise needs to quickly access content and will lead to other revenue opportunities for Box, said Greg Schulz, founder of storage research and analysis firm StorageIO, of Stillwater, Minn.

"In the [cloud storage] space, Box has moved upmarket. The consumer game is about how much can you give away for free," Schulz said. "But as you move up into the business market, people are willing to pay."

Box named several large enterprises including Sony, the American Hospital Association, Six Flags and Targus Group International that are earlier users of Box Accelerator.

PUBLISHED SEPT. 17, 2012

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