Magazine Store

50 Best Companies to Watch 2019

Transforming the Storage Industry with Extreme Peformance for Extreme Impact: Violin Systems


Storage technology is instrumental to a company’s success. Born in 2005, Violin Systems is revolutionizing how businesses operate by changing the SLAs and capabilities of information and application storage infrastructure. The company aims to deliver extreme performance storage breaking cost and performance boundaries impacting business-critical applications, and fueling innovation.

In 2017, Quantum Partners LP, a private investment fund managed by Soros Fund Management LLC acquired Violin memory IP out of which gave birth to. Violin Systems which is headquartered in San Jose, California.

The Genesis

Violin Systems started out as a hardware company looking to transform the storage industry by pioneering an all-flash-array that transforms business-critical workloads with the highest performance and low-latency. This approach directly impacts improvements in the application, time to insight, and faster transactions. However, in addition to the low-latency performance, this enables less server and software infrastructure and therefore actually achieves a great consolidation of over provisioned equipment and licenses. In other words, the company’s approach lies in doing more with less!

Violin is an early propagator of the pathbreaking all-flash array technology; it spearheaded the tech in the enterprise by moving forward with innovative, patented technology providing consistency in storage performance. Many big brands adopted Violin technology and even after the rebirth of the company which fueled the emergence of new Violin Systems, these deployed products still work today. Most products have issues when first delivered, however, Violin’s support, engineering and even senior management work hand in hand with its early adopters to ensure success, quality of service as a key cornerstone.

Challenging the Status Quo

Violin is a pioneer in transformative storage technology. The company continues to challenge the status quo and make other approaches irrelevant. Although several market players have gradually caught up to some of its capabilities, it still holds its flag high. However, success never comes easy. Violin, like any other game changer, faced difficulties in the starting days to convince people to adopt the technology. Gradually, it paved its way to success and got consolidated by acquisition. Its strong focus on core competencies has enabled the firm to grow and protect its core offerings.

The Ingredients of Success

Violin’s core focus has been on consistent performance and unmatched reliability to ensure that business-critical applications run faster without fail, deliver results faster, and ultimately provide a competitive advantage to its customers. By increasing performance at the storage level, it is able to positively affect the rest of the data infrastructure, where customers can now save money with a reduction of servers, associated application software, and OS, resulting in major cost savings. This was, however, achieved with dedication, hard work, and support from employees.

According to Violin Systems, a business must possess the following traits in order to be successful:

Customer Relationship: Relationship and the whole customer experience are essential, from the first impression to selling, delivering, supporting, and more. “Say a customer calls up finance for an inquiry on payment, and the finance person speaks to the customer about their business, their latest deployment and has detailed knowledge of them as a customer. That customer will get an overwhelming feeling that we, the vendor, know them and therefore care about them,” explains Mark Lewis, Executive Chairman, and CEO at Violin Systems.

Company Culture: It is a continuous journey to understand each other, especially when a company is growing. Culture must be adaptable with lead-by-example from the leadership team. Leaders must be approachable, non-judgmental, and open to feedback of ideas. They need to document any feedback and report back to everyone on actions to be taken. A culture of success cannot be created if people pluck up the courage to talk and no action is ultimately taken.

Market Intelligence: In order to stay relevant to consumer interests and needs, market intelligence is extremely important in all avenues– direct, online, social, face-to-face, and more. This is across customers, markets, and competition.

Meet the Innovator

Mark Lewis, Executive Chairman, and CEO: Mark most recently served as Chairman and CEO of Formation Data Services, developers of a revolutionary cloud software storage platform to replacing traditional arrays. He previously worked in various executive capacities at EMC, where he was instrumental in helping transform the business from a single-product hardware company to a leading IT solutions provider. Before EMC, Mark was Vice President and General Manager of Hewlett Packard/Compaq/Digital’s $2.5 billion Enterprise Storage Group, which was the largest storage organization in the world at the time, and served in various storage-related business, engineering, and product development roles at Digital Equipment Corporation.

“We enable new experiences in applications, services, and innovation through extreme performance and reliability, for immediate information access without compromise.”