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Seagate Unveils i365 Services Company

Seagate Technology announced today it has combined a number of recently acquired companies with a variety of storage services into a new company called i365 that aims to offer a more comprehensive suite of services, including data protection and recovery, retention management, e-discovery, and professional services.

"This is a new name, but not really a new company," said Carolyn Crandall, senior vice president of worldwide marketing. "We already have lots of customers and a great base of technology. This new structure will let us better serve those customers and introduce new services in a nimble fashion."

Many technology vendors offer services as a way to give customers more options and to smooth out the ebbs and flows of hardware sales. Some, like IBM, become as well known for their services as they are for their products. As a major vendor of hard disk drives, that's unlikely to happen to Seagate. But a suite of services does allow it to offer customers a more comprehensive range of options that can be sold with hardware products.

Seagate, with $13 billion in annual revenue, started down the services path in a major way in 2006 when it acquired ActionFront Data Recovery Labs and launched Seagate Recovery Services in 2007. That year it also bought EVault, which offered backup and recovery services as well as software as a service, the Open File Manager line of products from St. Bernard Software, and MetaLincs, which had e-discovery software and hosted and managed services. The collection had been operating under the name Seagate Services.

Seagate says it has more than 22,000 customers, and that i365 will be able to provide them with services from eight global data centers.

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