Quantum Buys Backup Bunch

Snaps up stealth-mode startup SANlight for $8.5M to enhance disk-based backup line

February 6, 2003

3 Min Read
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Quantum Corp. (NYSE: DSS) has acquired stealth-mode backup software startup SANlight Inc. for $8.5 million in cash (see Quantum to Buy SANlight).

The Mountain View, Calif.-based SANlight, founded in 2000, was privately held. Quantum, which already held a 7 percent stake in the startup, did not disclose the names of its investors; SANlight executives referred all inquiries to Quantum.

Quantum is cagey on what exactly the eight-member SANlight team has been up to. Nor is it especially forthcoming on what it plans to do with the company's software.

Larry Orecklin, president of Quantum's Storage Solutions Group, says that SANlight's backup, restore, and archiving software technology will be integrated into future members of the DX line of disk-based backup systems, as well as other products (see Quantum's Systems Chief Gets Hungry and Quantum Slips Disks Into Backup).

"We've been looking to accelerate our time to market and enhance our capabilities in this space," he says. "SANlight has been focused in the data-protection space... They've been working in a couple of areas that were complementary to what we were doing."Orecklin adds, however, that we shouldn't conclude that Quantum will be introducing its own line of backup software as a result of this deal. On the contrary, he says, it will continue to work with Veritas Software Corp. (Nasdaq: VRTS), Legato Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: LGTO), Computer Associates International Inc. (CA) (NYSE: CA), IBM Tivoli, and other backup software vendors to certify its DX disk backup systems. Quantum will also work with the members of the Enhanced Backup Solutions Initiative (EBSI), a marketing consortium it helped bootstrap, to package together systems and software for disk-based backup (see Group Backs Disk Backup).

But what the heck was SANlight actually doing? Quantum officials did confirm that SANlight had some iSCSI software development underway, but said that was only part of its overall efforts. Meanwhile, others in the know aren't saying, either. "Quantum was compelled to acquire SANlight's intellectual property since it is harmonious with Quantum's line of business," says Brian Berg, president of Berg Software Design, who has done technical consulting work for SANlight. [Ed. note: Well... we could have told you that.]

In an unrelated development, Quantum has hired a CTO for its storage solutions group: Michael Del Rosso, previous CTO of OTG Software, which Legato bought last year (see Legato Ropes In OTG).

Of SANlight's eight employees, only Mark Kaleem, its founder and CEO, will not join Quantum. Orecklin says Kaleem's skills set didn't mesh with Quantum's needs.

Before starting SANlight, Kaleem was VP of corporate development at AboveNet Communications (a Web hosting provider acquired by Metromedia Fiber Network Inc.(MFN) [Nasdaq: MFNX]) and before that was VP of strategic business development at InfoSpace Inc. Kaleem received a bachelor's degree in commerce from the University of Karachi and a master's degree in economics from Oklahoma State University.Separately today -- apparently a day of teensy-weensy acquisitions in the storage industry -- CA announced its plans to acquire SAN design startup Netreon Inc. for an undisclosed sum (see CA Nets Netreon

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