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Fabrik, a vendor of physical and on-demand storage products, said at Macworld today in San Francisco that it has made a deeper foray into the consumer storage market by purchasing G-Technology, a vendor of attached storage products for Macintosh computers. The acquisition comes less than a year Fabrik acquired SimpleTech. G-Tech gives the company a foothold in the Mac market, where design and multimedia applications drive large-scale storage purchases.
Today’s storage consumers have a wide range of options, from plug-in drives to LAN-attached storage to on-demand services. At the same time, an explosion of personal content, from photos to videos to music, is driving demand.
Backed by investments from Comventures, Intel Capital, and — most recently — a $24.9 million Series D investment round that was led by 3i, Fabrik is trying to tie together these options, offering physical storage, on-demand storage, disaster recovery and content-sharing services.
If the company can capture an installed base of locally attached storage users, it may be able to migrate those users to in-the-cloud storage. For one thing, the predictable, recurring revenue streams of a service model are more likely to appeal to investors. On-demand storage is also a good way to fight the commoditization of basic physical storage, since customers are more likely to stick with one service for all their storage needs.
Fabrik won’t be the only one going after this opportunity. The company will compete head-to-head with storage giants like Seagate (whose eVault service uses a SaaS model) and pure-play storage companies like XDrive. Computer makers like Dell are also moving in: Dell said back in November that it plans to acquire storage vendor EqualLogic for $1.4 billion in cash, and it already offers an on-demand backup solution called DataSafe.