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Commvault CEO Sanjay Mirchandani: Subscription Model Has Spurred Stronger Partner Relationships

Joseph F. Kovar

‘I think we have the strongest relationship we’ve had with our channel in a long, long time. With a subscription, you have constant engagement. You have a constant way of engaging your customers, your channel, the upsell, solving problems together,’ says Commvault CEO Sanjay Mirchandani.

Commvault On A Roll

Data protection and data management software developer Commvault exemplifies the changes occurring in the storage software industry. The Tinton Falls, N.J., company, which just a few years ago was known as a dependable data backup vendor, is now a nimble provider of technology for protecting and managing data on-premises and across public and private clouds.

Nothing shows the changes that Commvault has seen more than the company’s most recent financial quarter. The company reported late last month that, while total revenue grew 8 percent year over year, annual recurring revenue rose 12 percent and total recurring revenue rose 20 percent during the same time period. Subscriptions accounted for 81 percent of the company’s total revenue in the quarter.

Commvault CEO Sanjay Mirchandani told CRN in an exclusive interview that his company has been on a three-year journey to move nearly all of its revenue to a subscription basis. That journey, Mirchandani said, has been helped with the introduction nearly three years ago of Commvault Metallic, a SaaS-based data protection technology targeted exclusively at small and midsize businesses through channel partners.

[Related: THE 20 COOLEST CLOUD STORAGE COMPANIES OF THE 2022 CLOUD 100]

“As customers are accelerating to the cloud, the desire to provide a subscription or a utility model is a catalyst,” he said. “And when we offer our customers the option to have these workloads on-premises and these workloads delivered through Metallic, subscription is an actual choice for the software.”

That choice is also important for Commvault’s channel partners, who account for about 90 percent of the company’s total revenue, Mirchandani said.

“In the perpetual world, you have a lot more up-front activity, and then either the partner or us or the customer takes the lead position on how they want to roll it out at the time frames they want to roll it out. ... But in the subscription world, we’re far more engaged with our partners because it’s an ongoing journey where customers have to renew it at different points in time,” he said.

Mirchandani also had a lot to say about the competition, the importance of developing one’s own intellectual property, and the changing talent shortage. Here’s a look at the data protection world through the eyes of Commvault.

 
Joseph F. Kovar

Joseph F. Kovar is a senior editor and reporter for the storage and the non-tech-focused channel beats for CRN. He keeps readers abreast of the latest issues related to such areas as data life-cycle, business continuity and disaster recovery, and data centers, along with related services and software, while highlighting some of the key trends that impact the IT channel overall. He can be reached at jkovar@thechannelcompany.com.

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