Iron Mountain Scoops Up LiveVault

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Looking to become known for more than just carting companies’ data tapes around the country, Iron Mountain has agreed to acquire backup specialist LiveVault for $50 million.

LiveVault offers disk-based online server backup and recovery software as a service to shore up the data housed on PCs and servers in small and medium-sized companies. The Marlborough, Mass., company created a buzz earlier this year by hiring Monty Python veteran John Cleese to promote its wares.

The deal, expected to close any day, comes as no surprise. Iron Mountain has been an investor and partner of LiveVault since 2000 and currently owns nearly 14 percent of the company. Iron Mountain will pay $42 million for the remaining shares of LiveVault it doesn’t own.

During that time, Boston-based Iron Mountain has served as LiveVault’s largest sales channel and offered Server Electronic Vaulting services via a license agreement with the specialist.

In addition to the intellectual property and employee talent, Iron Mountain will be able to pad its customer base, as LiveVault boasts more than 2,000 corporate customers, mostly SMBs.

It’s also a nice complement to Iron Mountain’s $117 million purchase of Connected Corp., a leader in backup and recovery solutions for PCs.

“This latest acquisition demonstrates Iron Mountain’s continued commitment to solving the distributed data protection challenge,” Iron Mountain said in a statement.

John Clancy, executive vice president of Iron Mountain’s Digital business unit, called the deal a “natural move” for Iron Mountain at a time when demand for server backup and recovery has been ramping up.

While most backup providers will list natural disasters and equipment failures as reason enough to back up data, server and PC backup is also important considering the stringent record-keeping regulations hounding corporations these days.

Regs such as Sarbanes-Oxley, HIPAA and SEC 17-a4 have kept businesses on their toes. Iron Mountain, EMC, IBM, HP and a raft of other vendors have been swooping in to help companies safeguard their data.

With such acquisitions, and software packages such as Electronic Vaulting and Digital Archives, Iron Mountain is also looking to reinvent itself as a leader in digital data protection. The company has been carting around the physical storage cartridges of its customers for years. While that business has remained steady, Iron Mountain’s electronic vaulting business has been growing at a strong 20 to 25 percent clip.

Iron Mountain came away with some egg on its edifice in April when it admitted to losing backup tapes on four occasions.

Iron Mountain did not name the customers it let down, but the admission came on the heels of announcements from Bank of America and Ameritrade that the financial firms had lost backup tapes containing customer data.

The company has embraced data encryption and recommended that its customers do the same.

Article courtesy of

Clint Boulton
Clint Boulton
Clint Boulton is an Enterprise Storage Forum contributor and a senior writer for covering IT leadership, the CIO role, and digital transformation.

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