Open source CRM software provider SugarCRM, based in Cupertino, Calif., announced completion of a $20 funding round, led by New Enterprise Associates. This most recent investment brings total funding to $46 million.
The funding will be used to boost research and development as well as global expansion, particularly in Europe and Asia, said CEO and Co-Founder John Roberts. "I think one of the fascinating things about starting off as an open source project is, much sooner than we anticipated, the people we were working with were in Europe and Asia," he says.
In March 2007, the company opened its first subsidiary in Dublin, called Sugar Europe, to help support infrastructure for European customers. An Asian subsidiary based in Shanghai, China, is currently under development. "We have ten folks there right now, and we're really getting a complete SugarCRM subsidiary in within the next two to three quarters," he says. "There is a huge open source base in China, and China's a country where we go really well together."
The expansion is also part of Roberts' plan to take SugarCRM public, though he admits that day is a couple of years in the future. "That's a big part of why we expanded the capital, to prepare us for that," he says. "This funding was based on the momentum of the business. We've got a world-class set of investors." Menlo Park, Calif.-based Draper Fisher Jurvetson and San Francisco-based Walden International also participated in the funding round.
Roberts says he predicts the company's employee size will double, to 300 from 150, by the end of the year. "I think the transparency we brought is being incredibly well-received across the globe," he says. "People see an alternative to proprietary, lock-in solutions."
The news comes on the heels of an announcement of Sugar Community Edition stack installers for Solaris and OpenSolaris, which the company announced Wednesday