Goodbye eFolder, Hello Axcient: Merged Company Rebrands, Intros Suite With Products From Both


The data protection vendor formed by the merger of Axcient and eFolder this week said it has settled on Axcient as its combined brand.

Axcient also launched a new Axcient Business Availability suite composed of data protection technologies from both Axcient and eFolder.

The moves come in the wake of the 2017 merger of data protection and file sync and share software developer eFolder and disaster recovery-as-a-service developer Axcient with the help of outside investment.

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Starting this week, the combined company is now known as Axcient, said Eric White, president of the company whose headquarters is now in Denver.

One of the biggest changes since the merger is the transformation of Axcient into a channel-only company, White told CRN. The company in August unveiled plans to embrace a channel-only model.

"We had different approaches to our go-to-market," he said. "We are now 100-percent channel, primarily via MSPs. Axcient before had a mixed channel-direct approach to the market."

The new Axcient is also a financially solid company, White said.

"Financially, we're healthy," he said. "Both Axcient and eFolder were profitable. But our focus isn't on profits, though. We expect to make more investments in the partner experience, R&D, and scaling the products."

Axcient is also maintaining the bulk of the product lines the two original companies brought to the merger, and combining them into a new Axcient Business Availability Suite, White said.

The Axcient Business Availability Suite consists of five products.

For business continuity, the suite includes the Replibit image-based backup and disaster recovery software from eFolder along with Axcient's BRC backup and recovery cloud.

Also included are the ex-eFolder CloudFinder software for automatically backing up data from Microsoft Office 365, the Fusion technology from Axcient for protecting VMware workloads on the cloud, and the ex-eFolder Anchor file sync and share technology.

Axcient Fusion, which currently focuses on VMware workloads, may also be available to protect Nutanix hyper-converged infrastructure workloads in the near future, White said.

Jeff Cummings, chief revenue officer at Axcient, told CRN that Axcient is working on integrating the different parts of the Axcient Business Availability Suite.

Partners are getting a single pane of glass that will allow partners to see all the products they are using, manage billing, and see how customers are doing, Cummings said. By year-end, Axcient will also add sales and marketing tools to the suite, he said.

Kevin Hoffman, Axcient chief technology officer and a founder and chief technology officer at eFolder who was the only top-level executive of either company to remain with the combined Axcient, said that with its focus on the MSP market Axcient remains committed to working with the professional services automation platform providers despite those companies' own storage offerings.

Specifically, Norwalk, Conn.-based storage vendor Datto in late 2017 acquired PSA platform provider Autotask, while PSA platform developer Kaseya in May acquired storage vendor Unitrends.

"Our focus is on availability and business continuity," Hoffman told CRN. "Other companies are not as focused as broadly on this as us. The MSP ecosystem is still open. We will work with the PSA providers. We are seeing MSPs look to complete solutions."

White said there is definitely a best-of-breed vs. an all-in-one mentality when it comes to data protection.

"MSPs who choose the best-of-breed approach today are looking at differentiation," he said. "So far, we haven't seen the merger of PSA and storage vendors impact our business."

The biggest change by far at Axcient is greater partner communications than ever, said Luis Alvarez, president and CEO of Alvarez Technology Group, a Salinas, Calif.-based solution provider who worked with both companies before their merger.

"During the merger, we were wondering how they would unify," Alvarez told CRN. "We worked with both companies before, and knew their product lines."

Alvarez said he is also happy to see Axcient commit to being 100-percent channel partner-focused.

"It's always a challenge for partners when their vendors have a direct channel," he said. "This was especially true with Axcient Fusion, where there was a group of customers who wanted to go direct. And Fusion is often a way to open the door for us to discuss other opportunities."

Settling the brand question shows that the Axcient executives are playing well with each other, which Alvarez said is important given that customers have a lot of choices in the data protection space.

"To keep their partners, Axcient has to show it is better than the competition," he said. "And I'm pleased with the direction the company is moving. Now they have to execute. So far, they've painted a pretty picture."