Today, Symantec announced that the Information Management (Data Protection) side of Symantec will be called Veritas Technologies Corporation (press release). Frankly, if they had chosen anything else, I would have been disappointed.
The Truth Is Still the Truth
“Veritas” actually means “Truth,” hence the original name as a way to imply the reliability and the authenticity assurances that Veritas’ technologies offer for your data, not only in traditional backup, but also in storage management and availability technologies. And in a world of grey, some things (like data protection) really need to be black and white. Either your data is recoverable or not. Either your users are able to access their IT resources or they aren’t. Just as the world needs more definitive and unambiguous “truth,” many IT environments need better data protection, data preservation, high availability, and integrated storage management. Maybe they need more Veritas?
Aside from the philosophy, the brand still has equity today.
The reality is that many of those folks that are using or have used/considered the information management portfolio from Symantec continued to see/say “Veritas” as the subtitle in their dealings anyway. Heck, many of the products’ best practice guides or social communities still leveraged Veritas in the product names somewhere – e.g., “Symantec Cluster Services powered by Veritas,” which the world always has and will again (presumably) call VCS.
So, what does Veritas need to do to be successful moving forward?
Leverage the broader IM portfolio to tell a single story, period.
Yes, they have to continue to separate their back-office operations, shore up their field/marketing, and gain some IM-specific affinity with partners, but I believe the highest imperative is to truly embrace the Veritas portfolio (arguably for the first time).
While last year’s Symantec had a wide range of products, their marketing/field/engineering motion was really like two behemoth products (InfoSec and Backup), with the rest of the portfolio barely hitting most IT buyers’ radar, which is really too bad because some of those smaller products are not only really cool technology, but are also the differentiators between just “backup” and comprehensive “data protection, preservation, and availability.”
As much as InfoSec and InfoMgmt might have sounded like IT siblings or fraternal twins, they had very different buying cycles, influencers, and innovation patterns; making them distant cousins at best. Now, InfoMgmt (Veritas) is an “only child,” so it has no excuses but to tell a single story that will hopefully resonate with its channel, partners, and customers. That said, their single story isn’t (or shouldn’t be) a “backup” story, but a true “information management” story that delivers data protection, preservation, and availability in a single portfolio. Essentially, Veritas has the opportunity to deliver what I call the Data Protection Spectrum from a single company, through a broad channel system to customers of all sizes—if they choose to. If they don’t choose to leverage their Veritas-wide IM portfolio of differentiable capabilities, then they won’t really be “Veritas” as the whole truth, but merely the half-truth of being the “NetBackup/BackupExec Company.” 2015 will tell, but I’m optimistic for them.
Congrats to my Mountain View friends on another milestone toward what could be an amazing adventure—and welcome back, Veritas.