Zerto Closes $50M Funding Round, Hires Ex-HPE Exec For Product Management

Rob Strechay

Enterprise virtualized data center and cloud disaster recovery software developer Zerto this week hired a former Hewlett Packard Enterprise and NetApp product manager to lead the company's product road map going forward.

Boston-based Zerto's hiring of Rob Strechay as the company's new vice president of product management follows on the heels of the company's unveiling of a new $50 million round of funding aimed at supporting continued product development.

Zerto sells business continuity and disaster recovery software for virtual and cloud environments, and its flagship Zerto Virtual Replication product competes with VMware's Site Recovery Manager and others.

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With its latest software update in May, Zerto added support for replicating and migrating data between VMware vSphere and Microsoft Hyper-V hypervisors, and from private clouds to public clouds such as Amazon Web Services. The update also lets Zerto partners deliver their own disaster recovery services.

The new executive and funding will help bring a new level of maturity to a company that has already proven itself in the field, said Dan Molina, chief technology officer of Nth Generation Computing, a San Diego-based solution provider and Zerto channel partner.

"That $50 million means a lot of people out there believe in Zerto's product and the company," Molina told CRN. "Zerto has excellent technology which can be demonstrated in a short time. Fifty million [dollars] will help them continue to build their market."

Molina also praised Zerto for hiring Strechay, an executive he has known for years. He said he first met Strechay when the latter was at virtual infrastructure management software provider Akkori, which was acquired by NetApp in 2011. Molina later picked up his relationship with Strechay when the latter worked at Hewlett-Packard.

"I remember Akkori's BalancePoint software," Molina said. "The way the product worked back then was way beyond any other solution, and it worked well with NetApp, HP, EMC and more. To do that, Akkori really needed people who understood what all the vendors were doing. Rob truly listens to customer needs, and listens to partners. He's good at paying attention to key points and bringing them to solutions."

Gil Levonai, chief marketing officer at Zerto, told CRN that the new $50 million E-round of funding brings total funding in the company to $110 million. It may be the last round for Zerto.

"From a growth perspective, we may have grown to where we can do an IPO," Levonai said. "But whether we do an IPO depends on the market. It's no secret we're looking at an IPO. But there's no hurry. Our CFO will tell us when we're ready."

The new funding will help Zerto continue developing its products, including significantly beefing up its engineering team, he said. The company also plans to expand its sales and marketing teams into new markets and geographies.

Zerto to date has not done any acquisition, Levonai said. "We'll consider it if something comes up," he said. "But nothing so far. It has to make sense from our perspective."

Zerto sells exclusively through indirect channels, including via software resellers and systems integrators as well as cloud services providers, he said.