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Backups for Microsoft 365 expands Rewind's portfolio

Rewind expands its SaaS protection with Backups for Microsoft 365. The new service is the first from Rewind in support of a major SaaS platform.

Rewind, a backup service company focused on protecting business SaaS applications, is expanding into big-league organization protection with backups for Microsoft 365 services.

Rewind's new Backups for Microsoft 365 focuses on protecting select workloads for five Microsoft 365 applications: Exchange Online, SharePoint user sites, OneDrive for Business, Office 365 Groups and Microsoft Teams.

Office 365 is included in Microsoft 365 subscription purchases.

Vinny Choinski, a senior analyst at Enterprise Strategy Group (ESG), a division of TechTarget, said many organizations rely strictly on a SaaS provider like Microsoft for backup services and protection despite explicit warnings -- sometimes from the vendors, themselves -- that such services do not include backups.

You might be a midmarket player but [these applications are] business critical to you. You want to make sure you're protecting your data.
Vinny ChoinskiSenior analyst, Enterprise Strategy Group

Indeed, according to Microsoft's own service agreement, users should back up data with third-party apps and services to minimize loss in the event of an outage or disruption.

"[Rewind] probably realizes most organizations, when they reach a certain level of maturity, use Microsoft 365," Choinski said. "You might be a midmarket player but [these applications are] business-critical to you. You want to make sure you're protecting your data."

Backups for Microsoft 365 is now generally available and can be added to existing Rewind customer accounts. Like other Microsoft 365 backup services, subscriptions are charged per user, with Rewind's basic subscription costing $4.16 per month, billed annually.

Other features of the service include up to six daily backup snapshots, unlimited data storage and retention, and granular data restores, along with specific target backups per application.

Moving to enterprise protection

The Rewind service comes from a technology partnership with cloud management software company SkyKick, which specializes in Microsoft 365 backup services and sells through channel partners.

The new service expands Rewind's portfolio, Choinski said. The SkyKick partnership enables Rewind to grow its catalog without diluting its focus on backup services for other, smaller applications.

"A lot of the big data protection players in the market have pretty mature offerings," he said. "[A partnership is] the fastest way to get all the bells and whistles they need to wrap into their portfolio."

Rewind specializes in backups for business applications that offer only catastrophe-level backup support, requiring business-wide restorations rather than just individual user accounts, primarily applications supporting small and mid-level organizations.

Other applications currently supported by Rewind for backup services include Trello, Intuit QuickBooks, GitHub, and BigCommerce. Rewind also sells a data copy service, called Rewind Copy, for Shopify, BigCommerce and Intuit QuickBooks.

Choinski said a 2021 ESG survey indicated that 35% of respondents rely on the original SaaS vendor for backups rather than seeking third-party services. Still, 33% of those surveyed reported they've lost cloud-resident data, an increase from 18% reporting they lost cloud-resident data in 2020.

"We see a big SaaS [backup] disconnect still," he said. "[But] we're starting to see a market awareness change."

As more organizations realize how vulnerable SaaS data and cloud workloads are, the more they'll likely start looking for mature backup platforms, Choinski said. Such tools can support not only core SaaS technology, but also ancillary applications necessary for users.

Future support

Rewind, founded in 2015 and based in Ottawa, Ontario, completed a $65 million Series B funding round in September, following a $15 million Series A in January.

Rewind co-founder and CEO Mike Potter said the funding this year has enabled the company to add services such as Trello and formalize the SkyKick partnership for Microsoft 365.

"This partnership has allowed us to accelerate that timeline," he said. "Partnering where we can is the best way we can focus on what we do best, which is backing up the rest of the cloud."

Potter said the company, which has about 130 employees, will focus in-house development efforts on smaller scale SaaS applications while seeking new partnerships to cover the other major SaaS platforms such as Google Workspace, or the numerous products by Salesforce.

Companies focusing on protecting major SaaS applications include long-standing brands such as Veeam, Druva, Commvault and Rubrik.

"We're talking to those market leaders," he said. "If people are focused on [those SaaS platforms], we'll focus on the others."

Future SaaS targets for Rewind include Jira, HubSpot and Zendesk, among others.

Tim McCarthy is a journalist living in the North Shore of Massachusetts. He covers cloud and data storage news.

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