Storage Soup

Aug 20 2013   6:30PM GMT

Cleversafe raises a hefty $55 million to push object storage

Sonia Lelii Sonia Lelii Profile: Sonia Lelii

Object storage vendor Cleversafe this week raised $55 million in a series D funding round, bringing the total amount the company has raised to about $100 million since it was founded in 2004 and started pushing its product in 2007.

CEO John Morris said he expects the round to be the last that his company will need.

The new funding was led by investor New Enterprise Associates,  and includes previous investors Motorola Solutions Venture Capital, Alsop Louie Partners, OCA Ventures and Presidio STX.

“We expect this to be the last round we’ll need before reaching profitability. We are focused on continuing to expand our technology, to roll it out to more and more customers to be able to fulfill the escalating market demand,” Morris said in an e-mail interview.

Morris said the Chicago-based company has more than 100 employees, with operations in London and Tokyo. Cleversafe has doubled the number of employees in the last year, and that growth will continue with the new money.

“We are hiring and looking to add talent in engineering, development, test-dev, sales and marketing,” Morris said. “As in the past, we continue to balance the acquisition of talent with the needs of the company, and how best to serve our growing customer base.”

Morris said he plans to expand into new vertical market segments, and continue to innovate its products.  Cleversafe is among a group of object-based storage vendors, which includes Scality, Amplidata, Caringo and Exablox, looking to capitalize on the rapid growth of file data with the still-emerging storage technology designed to push the limits of RAID and handle petabytes if not exabytes of storage. The larger storage vendors are also looking to move in on the market. For instance, object-storage support will be the early focus of EMC’s ViPR software-defined storage.

Morris became Cleversafe CEO in May after spending four years at Juniper Networks as EVP of field operations and strategic alliances, three years with Pay By Touch as COO and then CEO, and 23 years with IBM. Founder Chris Gladwin gave up the CEO post and becomes vice chairman while continuing to set Cleversafe’s technical vision.

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