Today Backblaze celebrates turning 10 years old. Tin is the traditional gift for a ten year wedding anniversary: a sign of strength and flexibility. Getting to this point took not only the steel to make the servers, but tin as well.
How things have changed:
|Team||Five Founders in a Palo Alto apartment||55 employees around the country|
|Storage||Hard drives strung together||60-drive, tool-less Storage Pods|
|Drives||1 TB drives||8 TB and 10 TB drives|
|Redundancy||RAID redundancy||20-Storage Pod Vault redundancy|
|Storage||45 TB of total stored customer data||300,000+ TB|
|Customers||A few friends as customers||Hundreds of thousands across 125 countries|
|Files Saved||1 customer’s data restored (mine)||20 billion+ files restored|
|Business Lines||Consumer Backup||Consumer Backup, Business Backup, and Cloud Storage|
|Financials||$0 revenue||Millions in revenue and profitable|
|Mission||Make storing data astonishingly easy and low-cost||Make storing data astonishingly easy and low-cost|
Someone recently asked me, “Does Backblaze look now the way you imagined it would ten years ago?” The honest answer? I had never imagined what it would like in ten years; when trying to figure out how to even get to market, that timespan wasn’t even on my radar. When we were filming our first video, we were more concerned with finding our first customer than planning our first birthday.
Now, not only has it been a decade, but we’re signing 5-year data center contracts and talking about what the company will look like in ten years and beyond. We often say that we hope this will be the last job for our employees.
Thinking back, a few things I learned:
- Staying in business is as much about commitment as cash.
- The existential risks are hard to predict.
- The hardest times are rarely due to tech or business; they’re personal.
- The accepted wisdom is often wrong.
- Less money often leads to better solutions.
- Culture affects everything.
I’ll expand on all of these in future posts. Over the next few months, I’ll be more active in bringing back our entrepreneurship series of blog posts. Don’t worry, our Hard Drive Stats and all the other stuff aren’t going anywhere!
But today is about the community that makes Backblaze what it is: None of it would have been possible without all of the people who built Backblaze as their own company every day, our friends and boosters, partners, and (of course) our incredible customers. While I did not, and likely could not, imagine a decade ago where Backblaze would be today, I’m thrilled at where we have arrived. Thank you.
And tomorrow, onto the next decade.