While the largest companies in the world are starting to figure out what Silicon Valley startups have known for years — it’s way easier and cheaper to use cloud computing services — cloud storage has required a bit more convincing. After all, it’s one thing to run a few apps on Amazon Web Services, but it’s quite another for conservative CIOs to warm up to the idea of storing their extremely sensitive corporate data outside of their control.
Fortunately for Ellen Rubin, co-founder and CEO of newly launched ClearSky Data, that’s starting to change. Rubin, who will be speaking at Structure 2015 in November, thinks that the combination of breakthroughs in storage caching technology (thanks to her co-founder, CTO Laz Vekiarides) and lots of spare Metro Ethernet capacity means the time is right for enterprises to consider a hybrid approach to cloud storage. But Rubin also sees a cultural shift in the way cloud services are being evaluated that’s making it easier for companies like ClearSky to emerge.
Rubin and Vekiarides raised the money for ClearSky Data last year, but kept quiet while working on their idea. Last month at VMworld, the company emerged from stealth mode with its take on a modern approach to storage needs: a hybrid combination of a storage appliance in the customer’s data center, cached storage within a metropolitan area, and cold storage on Amazon’s S3 service.