NetApp enhances ROBO capability for Cloud Volumes with Talon Storage acquisition

NetApp and Talon were already strategic partners, but the acquisition and integration of Talon's technology into NetApp Cloud Volumes will expose it to a much broader audience than the large enterprises who have been buying it.

Vikram Bhatia, VP of Go-To-Market for NetApp’s Cloud Data Services

NetApp has moved to strengthen their NetApp Cloud Volumes managed storage solution with the acquisition of Mount Laurel New Jersey-based startup Talon Storage. The deal is intended to strengthen NetApp Cloud Volumes with the Talon FAST cloud data service, which uses file shares to address ROBO [Remote Office and Branch Office] issues by providing a ‘Global File Cache’ service for these workloads, enabling file server consolidation into a secure, globally accessible file system

“Talon is a self-funded profitable startup, whose solution complements our Cloud Volumes offering extremely well,” said Vikram Bhatia, VP of Go-To-Market for NetApp’s Cloud Data Services. “Their solution enables file caching and locking for remote locations. It was designed for that, and most of their current work is ROBO use cases.”

Strengthening ROBO uses cases through Cloud Volumes fits with NetApp’s broader strategy around the offering.

“From the beginning, our strategy with Cloud Volumes has been to give customers storage in the cloud that meets all their requirements so they don’t need point solutions,” Bhatia stated, “The Talon offering strengthens us in ROBO, so will extend the use cases where customers will want to use Cloud Volumes.”

Bhatia noted that NetApp and Talon were already strategic partners.

“We have been working with Talon for almost a year now with Talon customers who have been deploying in the cloud,” he said. “We already have several joint customers using Talon with NetApp Cloud Volumes, and Talon FAST already works with the Cloud Volumes back end.”

The two companies coming together will make it easier for Talon’s customers who were not already in the cloud to get there.

“Many of their customers are not in the cloud, but are looking to move there, and this gives existing Talon customers an easy past to move to the cloud,” Bhatia said. “This is a great way for them to leverage NetApp solutions in the cloud and get features they would not have received if the two solutions were not together. It makes sense for both companies to do this together from both a technology and Go-to-Market perspective.”

Bhatia indicated that the Talon solution is broadly applicable across verticals, and that this will facilitate broader use cases. He also said that the acquisition will significantly expand the Total Addressable Market for the technology.

“Fortune 100 customers use it now at the high end of the market, but now smaller enterprises and SMB who are completely cloud will be able to use it because of the Cloud Volumes suite,” he said.

“For existing NetApp Cloud Volumes customers, this is a straightforward play,” Bhatia added. “It provides another use case which will be available in an integrated fashion, as we integrate the technology over the course of the next few months.”

Talon already sells to set of their own channel partners, although that channel is dwarfed by NetApp’s large partner ecosystem.

“We want to be sure that our legacy NetApp partners know that they can leverage one more solution in their offering,” Bhatia said. “There is some overlap in the two channel universes, but we want to make sure we bring the other Talon partners onboard as well.”

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