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Start-Up Profile: Cubbit

In cloud storage service

Company
Cubbit Srl.

HQs
Bologna (Italy) and Tel Aviv (Israel)

Date founded
July 2016

Financial funding
Several seed rounds from september 2017 to February 2019 totaling $520,000, investors including Barclays PLC, Techstars, European Commisson, Barcamper Ventures, Climate-KIC Acceleration Programme (EIT) and TIM, according to Crunchbase. Cubbit launches on Kickstarter on February 26 to produce its Cubbit Cell and got €128,064 up to now.

Main executives

Cubbit OnofriStefano Onofri, co-founder and CEO; previously start-up Day Unibo founder and organizer

 

 

 

Marco Moschettini, co-founder and CTO, software engineer, holding a software engineering degree specialized in peer-to-peer networks and machine learning

Lorenzo Posani, co-founder and CSO, data scientist, specialized in big data modelling and complex systems analysis

Alessandro Cillario, co-founder and COO, legal and business development, formerly start-up Day Unibo founder and organizer

Number of employees
11 plus the 4 founders

Technology
Cubbit is a cloud storage service, with the same user experience of Dropbox but running on a distributed data center made of Cubbit Cells.

Cubbit Cell

The technology is based on an hybrid distributed architecture. The heavy load, namely storing and transferring files, is carried out by a peer-to-peer network of these cells, single-board devices that together forms what the company call ‘the Swarm’. Meanwhile, a coordinator server handles authorizations, metadata, and applies optimization algorithms and machine learning to optimize the network. Thanks to the distribution of workload, this hybrid architecture has ~1/1000 the maintenance costs of traditional data centers. This way, the firm enables a collaborative cloud storage that ishack-proof, sustainable, and free from monthly fees.

Of the total storage space plugged into the distributed network, about 80% is directly used to offer cloud space to the users themselves (account and redundancy), while about 20% of the storage is reserved to Cubbit. This storage is collected to create a distributed network and offer cloud services to businesses and professional users.

Product description
It combines cloud storage services with security and privacy.

The Cubbit’s cloud service and the Cubbit Cell, connected to a wifi router, have several qualities over other storage solutions:
Up to 4 accounts: the user is granted up to 4 accounts. This way, the user can purchase the Cell with a friend and share the cloud space.
Expandability: the Cell is expandable up to 4TB of cloud space for free by plugging in any HDD via USB. For each gigabyte of physical storage the user attaches to the Cell, half is turned into cloud space and made available to the user.
Zero-knowledge: the user’s file is not stored inside the user’s Cell. Rather, the file is encrypted, split in chunks, multiplied to ensure redundancy and distributed across the network of Cells through end-to-end encrypted channels. Cubbit does not store the user’s password nor its randomly-generated encryption key. Before the upload, every file is encrypted with an AES-256 key that is randomly generated client-side and added to the user’s keychain. This keychain is then encrypted by a key generated from the user’s password before being saved on the coordinator server. The start-up implements a redundancy procedure based on Reed Solomon ECC: each encrypted file is divided into 24 pieces, which are processed into 36 redundancy shards. Out of the 36 shards, only 24 of them are necessary to retrieve the original encrypted file. This procedure alone ensures a statistical uptime of ~ 99.9999%, according to the company.

Released date
Cubbit’s software is running in beta in over 10 countries. Hundreds of beta testers use the web application daily to store and share their files in safety. Company is scheduling the shipping for August 2019, after its Kickstarter campaign.

Partners
Including collaboration with CERN (European Organization for Nuclear Research)

Price range
Starting from €299, but from €199 for the early bird on Kickstarter, the Cell comes with 512GB of cloud storage in its basic version.

Number of customers
2,400 pre-orders from 55 countries

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