May 3, 2012 | last updated May 3, 2012 11:02 am

Sepaton Taps Sunny San Jose For New Office

For a company aiming to keep its top spot in the data backup market for truly giant data users, Marlborough-based Sepaton knows it will need a two-pronged geographic strategy.

And so the nine-year-old company, headquartered in the tech hub of MetroWest, is reaching out thousands of miles to San Jose, Calif., which it hopes will also result in top talent from Silicon Valley.

Though MetroWest may not be as famous nationally as Silicon Valley, CEO Mike Thompson sees the similarities.

"Silicon Valley is synonymous with technology innovation and with a highly talented workforce situated among the most successful companies and academic institutions in the world," Thompson said. "Likewise, Massachusetts boasts the best-of-the-best colleges and universities and a lineage of technology companies that are superstars in their respective markets."

Sepaton has raised $82 million in venture capital since 2003. It also has offices in London and Beijing. The company has 80 employees in Marlborough and 110 worldwide.

The company has prior links to California. Some of its investors, including Focus Ventures and Menlo Ventures, are based there.

Growth Plan

Thompson said Sepaton's board of directors recently approved an "aggressive" growth strategy. And the San Jose office is part of that. The main goal is to make its products faster, better-performing and more scalable.

He said Sepaton plans to hire 17 experienced engineers this year in Massachusetts and California.

"We're looking for the best talent we can find and we need to get them relatively quickly, or at least on a timely basis," he said.

Some have already been hired and they are based at the new office, where they will work on "advanced" projects.

But that doesn't mean San Jose is the only place advanced work will be done, Thompson said.

"I do see it as a mix," he said. "It's never going to become a 'we and they.' It's a team between two locations."

If the company is successful, a future IPO is certainly possible, he said.

The data backup market is full of competitors, but Sepaton says it is the only one that caters exclusively to "big game" clients who backup dozens of petabytes of data every day.

Competitors, though they are bigger and have more resources, tend to use several of their systems for large clients rather than building one system specifically designed for them, Thompson said.

"It's a competitive market,' Thompson said. "I think we win on product, but that doesn't get you every deal."

Photo courtesy: Renjith Kirshnan

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