Panzura extends cloud strategy further by adding core solutions to the AWS Marketplace

Both the Panzura Freedom cloud file services and Vizion.ai cloud data management and analytics service are now in the AWS Marketplace, which the company thinks will help channel partners as Panzura completes their transition to a 100% channel-led model.

Patrick Harr, Panzura’s CEO

LAS VEGAS – Enterprise cloud file services vendor Panzura has announced the expansion of their relationship with Amazon Web Services [AWS] at the AWS Re:Invent show here. Both the Panzura Freedom cloud file services and Vizion.ai cloud data management and ML analytics service are now available on the AWS Marketplace.

The extension of Panzura’s relationship with AWS reflects the fact that since Patrick Harr took the CEO job there in 2016, market fundamentals have very much changed in Panzura’s favour.

“We were an on-prem database technology that handled unstructured data management for a multi-cloud world, and back then we were very much in the throes of convincing customers of the validity of that path,” Harr said. “Today, customers are much more cloud-first That’s a fundamental shift, which fits with the adoption of the public cloud, which has worked very much to our advantage.

“We believed that it would be a multi cloud world – and I include hybrid cloud in that context,” Harr added. “We believed that customers would use 3-4 clouds depending on the specific workload, and that has been what happened.”

The legacy product, Panzura Freedom, is an intelligent multi-cloud file storage solution, designed to consolidate storage, replace legacy NAS, and enable real-time, global collaboration. It is now in its eighth generation. However, Happ believed that for Panzura to scale effectively, it had to move beyond collaboration, and the result was the development of a second solution, Vizion.ai.

“We set out to build a new platform with fast enterprise search, which could do real-time analytics and data compliance,” Harr said. “Vizion.ai helps customers shift to the cloud by unlocking the power of data, with fast search, fast analytics, machine learning and compliance. Integrating Freedom with Vizion.ai, allows for dynamic data indexing and lets us take any machine generated data into serverless. It allows us to unfold our total strategy. We launched Vizion as a GA service in April, and now have over 450 customers on that service.”

Harr stated that one of the AWS announcements at Re:Invent, the UltraWarm fully managed, low-cost, warm storage tier for the Amazon Elasticsearch Service, was a validation of Vizion.ai.

“It can run very high performance inside of object or S3, and that’s effectively what we have done with Vizio,” Harr said. “We have Spark and Cassandra integrated as well, with a common data bus that lets us run data in S3 rather than EBS. It’s great to have that validation.”

At AWS Re:Invent, Panzura announced that both Freedom and Vizion.ai are now available on the Amazon Web Services Marketplace.

“We have significantly strengthened our AWS relationship by putting both Freedom and AI into their Marketplace,” Harr said. “AWS has evolved its marketplace to more of a distributor-reseller model. It’s important for channel partners that they have that type of orientation.”

While Panzura is an AWS Advanced Tier Technology Partner, the relationship with AWS is not an exclusive one.

“We also have relationships with Azure and Google Cloud, as well as a reseller agreement with IBM,” Harr indicated. “They are all part of a  transition from the old data centre to a new cloud-based model.”

Harr said that while Panzura still competes with the same data centre storage vendors as before, the cloud environment plays to Panzura’s advantages.

“It’s a sea change from on prem,” he stated. “We have fundamental strengths of being cloud native, and a true global cloud file system, which can put a software filer in any location and collaborate on that data in real time. We have seen a big uptick as companies have moved to distributed development. The way that they do that with data plays to the strengths of a global file system. Areas like gaming, health care, and amusement parks are all places where you have large distributed teams to allow the best talent to collaborate.”

Panzura has dramatically expanded its channel business to best take advantage of this transition.

“We have fundamentally shifted from the 20% channel business that we used to do, and we closed our fiscal year with 70% of business going through channel partners,” Harr said. “The plan for this next year is to be 100% channel led , which will include a  disincent for our sales people to do a deal through anything other a channel partner.  We have established strong partnerships with the likes of Insight, Presidio and Mainline, and have established channel alliances in Europe and APJ that have been correlated with AWS.”

The focus has been on developing strong relationships with core partners.

“Rather than increasing partner numbers, we have focused on a set of partners who have been very successful, and established a very strong Go-to-Market focus with those key partners,” Harr emphasized. “We bring them into opportunities, and they bring us new opportunities.”

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