Dell To Use New $60M Storage Venture Fund To Invest In Storage Startups


Dell, which has built its storage business on the back of multiple acquisitions over the last four years, is looking ahead at more opportunities with the establishment of a $60 million venture fund for storage startups.

Dell, in a Tuesday blog posting by Jim Lussier, managing director of Dell Ventures, said its new Dell Fluid Data Storage Fund is already targeting five to ten promising storage startups, and it will invest $3 million to $5 million in equity positions in those companies.

"Dell plans, through shrewd investments, to fund and fuel entrepreneurial success and at the same time help Dell achieve its strategic objectives," Lussier wrote.

[Related: Dell To Integrate Technology, Licensing, Service, Cloud Across All Storage Lines]

Dell's investments in the storage industry have until now been focused mainly on acquisitions. Indeed, the name "Dell Fluid Data Storage Fund" stems from the "Fluid Data" moniker that came with Dell's acquisition early last year of Compellent.

Dell's storage acquisition string stretches from its early 2008 acquisition of EqualLogic to its acquisition of Quest Software earlier this month.

In between were acquisitions of several smaller companies including Ocarina, which Dell is using to add compression technology to its storage lines, and Exanet, which provides technology Dell is using to add scalable NAS to its SAN arrays.

Lussier wrote he expects investments by the Dell Fluid Data Storage Fund to result in new technologies the company can use to expand its storage business.

"Our storage investments will align to the Dell Fluid Data architecture strategy with the end game of bringing more affordable and easier to manage storage solutions to more of the market. We are looking to change the economics of the storage industry by doing two things – bringing high-end enterprise features to the broad mid-market and solving enterprise problems at a midrange price point. Our storage investments will align to these tenets that we see as key to the future of storage," he wrote.

PUBLISHED JULY 17, 2012