Data-Backup Startup Rubrik Raises Funds at $1.3 Billion Valuation

Meet Rubrik, Silicon Valley's Latest Unicorn

Rubrik, a maker of data backup and recovery software, said it raised $180 million, valuing the startup at $1.3 billion. 

The investment round was led by Institutional Venture Partners and also included funds from Lightspeed Venture Partners and Greylock Partners. Palo Alto, California-based Rubrik has raised a total of $292 million and has now become a unicorn, a startup worth more than $1 billion.

The company is targeting its new generation of cloud-compatible backup and recovery software to replace older products from Dell Technologies Inc.'s EMC and Carlyle Group LP's Veritas in a $50 billion market. Rubrik has hundreds of customers and after a year and a half with its product on the market, is approaching $100 million in annualized bookings, Chief Executive Officer Bipul Sinha said, based on results from the company's quarter ended in January.

Rubrik said earlier this week its software can run directly on cloud products from Amazon.com Inc. and Microsoft Corp., so customers of those services can use Rubrik to catalog and back up their data. Rubrik is relying on its ability to provide backup for both data stored on-site at a company, called on-prem, and in the cloud, since most customers have some combination. 

The startup is benefiting because "people hate their existing solution and because of the cloud enablement that Rubrik brings," Sinha said in an interview. "We have the ability to orechestrate and automate their data from on-prem into the cloud."

The company has not yet touched the funds from its previous round of financing, Sinha said, but it went back to investors because it wants to dramatically accelerate efforts in product engineering and sales. Right now, with 330 employees, Rubrik is adding 70 to 80 a quarter and is also winning 75 to 85 new customers in each period, the CEO said. Current customers include real estate investment firm Jones Lang LaSalle Inc, various U.S. government clients and Fortune 500 companies who don't want to be named, he said.

Older rivals have an advantage in that most customers already use their software in some capacity, so Rubrik competes with them for deals frequently, he said. But with that software aging and in some cases two decades old, Sinha said he feels his company has an advantage because its programs were built with cloud in mind. Rivals meanwhile have been acquiring companies and adding on cloud capabilities -- Veritas' website has a banner headline advertising that it can provide data portability to multiple cloud services. 

Besides venture capital funds, Rubrik has gotten help from investors who played key roles at its rivals, the older backup and recovery firms. In 2015, John Thompson, the former chief executive officer of Symantec Corp., which bought backup vendor Veritas, was Rubrik’s top investor. Other investors included Mark Leslie, who was Veritas’s founding chairman and CEO, and Frank Slootman, who ran backup company Data Domain, now part of EMC Corp.

 

 

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