Customers looking beyond Microsoft's own data protection tools more often look to a vendor like Veeam, Shepard said.
"I'm a Veeam advocate in this respect," he said. "Veeam handles replication and failovers and handles on-site and cloud environments. It can back up Office 365 to cloud or on-premises, and handles unstructured data."
Spanning does have a better chance to develop its business as a stand-alone company than it did under Dell EMC, Shepard said. "It got lost inside Dell EMC, and became more of a small part of one slide in a data protection presentation."
Spanning Cloud Apps is currently focused on protecting data in Google's G Suite, but is seeing its Office 365 business growing much faster, Erramouspe said. He expects that, within a year, about 40 percent of revenue will come from G Suite data, 40 percent from Office 365 data, and 20 percent from Salesforce.com data.
While SaaS applications do a good job of protecting data, businesses really need a dedicated data protection application like Spanning, Erramouspe said.
"The SaaS do a really good job protecting your data from their errors," he said. "But they don't understand the users. If you tell them to delete data, it's deleted. If a hacker comes in and causes data to be deleted or corrupted, it's done. When the data's gone, you might as well go out of business. We provide the ultimate backstop in the event data goes away. It's all about recovery."
Spanning said it has experienced a 70-plus-percent year-over-year revenue growth serving over 7,000 customers who have over 1.5 billion items protected by Spanning's technology.