Coraid Raises $50 Million For Next-Gen Elastic Data Storage

Coraid, a developer of Ethernet SAN storage solutions, this morning announced that it has closed a sizable $50 million series C round led by Crosslink Capital. Coraid’s existing investors Menlo Ventures, Allegis Capital, Azure Capital Partners and affiliates of Silver Lake all participated in the round, as well as new investors including Seagate Technology and Kinetic Ventures.

As Robin pointed out in coverage of the company’s series B investment, it’s interesting to see Menlo Ventures both lead series B and continue with follow-on, considering it was the largest investor in data storage company 3PAR, which was acquired by HP for $2.35 billion last year. It seems like Coraid is Menlo’s next big bet in enterprise storage, and with the startup now having raised $85 million in outside investment, it may well be a target for acquisition.

To that end, Coraid also announced today that it has surpassed 1,500 customers in 45 countries, making it one of the up-and-comers in the $30 billion enterprise data storage market. With its series C investment, Coraid plans to expand global operations and continue developing technology in storage and cloud orchestration.

Coraid’s value proposition lies in its so-called EtherDrive, which offers a considerable price and performance advantage over legacy Fibre Channel and iSCSI solutions. In line with its mantra, Coraid recently acquired of cloud orchestration software vendor Yunteq to enable automation of storage, networks, and security for both public and private clouds.

John Jarve, GP at Menlo Ventures, said in the press release that Coraid has “pioneered a new category of storage” with Ethernet SAN, and that the company represents the next-generation of scale-out virtualized storage which helps companies with growing sets of data move past those aging storage technologies.

In other words, Coraid wants to help remove the roadblocks to virtualization and cloud computing, and the company thinks that leveraging improvements in flash storage can help do just that. Its new EtherFlash solution delivers 200,000 IOPS per shelf at $10 per GB.

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