SkyDesk, Plan B to Deliver Online Data Management

SkyDesk, an ASP that provides data storage and document management solutions to small- and medium-size businesses, and Plan B Communications, a local exchange carrier that delivers communications services and management tools to the same market, are teaming up to make SkyDesk's @Backup service available to Plan B broadband customers. SkyDesk has offered the @Backup service, which provides data protection, storage and remote access, directly through its Web site and indirectly through marketing relationships with companies like Dell, EarthLink, Excite@Home, Gateway, HP and Intuit.

@Backup protects files automatically and on demand every day by scanning the user's hard drive to detect changes made to critical files. The data is then compressed and encrypted twice prior to being transmitted to multiple, secure, off-site locations. After the data is stored, users can find, select and retrieve files from any browser-enabled PC.

"Because of their size, our customers often do not have the resources to take important precautionary measures to maintain daily backups of their files," Jim Hogan, Plan B's Executive Vice President of Sales and Marketing, said in a statement. "Through our partnership with SkyDesk, we can provide a remote storage solution that will automatically and cost-effectively protect the data that is vital to running their businesses."

The partnership with Plan B was good news for SkyDesk, which hit a snag with its planned IP0. On June 30, the company withdrew a $75 million public offering. In a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission, the company said "the terms obtainable in the marketplace at this time are not sufficiently attractive to warrant proceeding with the sale." SkyDesk was planning to use the net proceeds from the IPO for sales and marketing, R&D, infrastructure and support improvements, potential acquisitions and general corporate purposes.