Startups are weird. When we started coding Backupify in November of 2008, we thought of it as a little side project to make some money while we focused on other ideas. I was even raising money (unsuccessfully) for an idea around Sports + Twitter because I didn’t think backing up cloud based data was a big market.
I was wrong.
Since we launched publicly last June, we have been scrambling to keep up with the firehose of user requests for new features and new services to support. Users who are relying more and more on cloud services to run important aspects of their business but who are growing increasingly concerned with one provider (often a startup) as a single point of failure. The product roadmap hasn’t been set as much by us as it has been pulled along by the market. Late last summer we started getting a few emails from businesses who wanted to use our product and we initially put them off to stay focused on our consumer service, but eventually we got so many emails from CEOs, CTOs, and CIOs saying things like “we would feel much more comfortable with our own copy of the data we have in X service, and would be willing to pay $Y per year if you would add it” that we could no longer ignore the demand.
The move to the cloud is something businesses view with much hesitation. They love the idea, but worry about the loss of control of their data. What we have learned is that businesses aren’t concerned that cloud and SaaS companies don’t have backups, but are more worried about SLA issues, hacking, and the disconcerting fact that 1/3 of all data loss is just plain old user error.
In addition to that, we started getting regular inquiries from SaaS companies that wanted to work with us to provide a third party data backup solution for their customers.
We never wrote a business plan for Backupify. Instead, armed with a few slides, a working product, a user base growing at 1000 people a day, and dozens of emails asking us to build out new features, we hit the road. Our round ended up significantly oversubscribed, so we ended up in the delightful position of choosing the investors we thought best shared our vision and added the most value. The round was led by First Round Capital, and filled out with General Catalyst, Betaworks, Chris Sacca, Jason Calacanis, Andy Swan, and Bob Saunders. Charlie O’ Donnell will sit on the board, with Josh Kopelman from First Round and David Orfao from General Catalyst as board observers. Previously, Backupify had raised a small angel round from Dharmesh Shah of Hubspot, Sean O’Leary and Sterling Lapinski, co-founders of Genscape, and Vik Chadha, co-founder of Glowtouch.
So what happens now? Well, the vision of Backupify is to help companies move to the cloud with confidence. We are building a key part of the new software ecosystem. In coming months you will see new features to control and manage your data and integration with other clouds to give you multiple options to store and backup all your cloud stuff.
And finally, we love to hear from users. So if you have feature requests, or if you want us to integrate with your service, send us email and we will get add it to the roadmap. You are our best source of ideas.