Follow The Money: 10 Recent Tech VC Investments To Watch In November

Money In The Bank

Tech startups are once again pounding the pavement for backers with deep pockets, and for some -- particularly in the cloud, networking, storage, analytics and mobility segments -- there have been some handsome paydays in recent weeks.

Every month here on CRN, we'll track some tech company funding rounds from the past four to six weeks worthy of industry attention. Here's a look at the latest notable infusions -- and the companies that drove them.

Big Switch Networks

HQ: Palo Alto, Calif.
CEO: Guido Appenzeller
New Funding: $25 million
Round: B
Backers: Redpoint Ventures, Goldman Sachs, Index Ventures, Khosla Ventures, others

Big Switch Networks is one of the best-known names in the fast-crowding market for software-defined networking (SDN) startups. The company in mid-November began commercial sales of its Big Virtual Switch, Big Tap and Big Network Controller products, with the goal of selling 100 percent through solution provider and integrator partners.


HQ: Chicago
CEO: Bill Ready
New Funding: $35 million
Round: B
Backers: New Enterprise Associates, Accel Partners, others

Braintree is hitting its stride at just the right time, with the market for mobile commerce and online payments growing exponentially. The company now has more than $70 million in funding to expand its platform for use with major e-commerce and so-called m-commerce platforms, including Uber, Fab, Airbnb and HotelTonight.

BrightSource Energy

HQ: Oakland, Calif.
CEO: John Woolard
New Funding: $80 million
Round: Undisclosed
Backers: Alstom, VantagePoint Capital Partners, DFJ, CalSTRS, DBL Investors, Goldman Sachs, Chevron Technology Ventures, BP Ventures, others

More moolah for green tech: BrightSource Energy added $80 million to a war chest that's now seen north of $600 million in equity financing. It hasn't been an easy road; BrightSource pulled its IPO registration statement with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission back in April, citing "not optimal conditions for an IPO."


HQ: New York
CEO: Seth Besmertnik
New Funding: $20 million
Round: C
Backers: Investor Growth Capital, FirstMark Capital, Matrix Partners, others

Who said search engine optimization technology was cooling off? Certainly not where Conductor is concerned. The company in late October said it would use the $20 million infusion to boost operations and product development for Conductor Searchlight, its popular SEO platform.


HQ: Sunnyvale, Calif.
CEO: Srivats Sampath
New Funding: $2.4 million
Round: Undisclosed Backers: NEA, U.S. Venture Partners, Triple Point Ventures, Lerer Ventures

Not much is yet known about Grokr, except that it's going to tackle mobile Web search which, according to an interview with AllThingsD last month, "aims to deliver information before someone even knows they need it." Its product is an iPhone app, slated for release before the end of the year. Grokr's leader is former McAfee CEO Sampath.


HQ: Boston
CEO: Jay Bolgatz
New Funding: $12 million
Round: Undisclosed
Backers: Greenspring Associates, OpenView Venture partners, company executives

Ah, cloud backup: both interesting and lucrative. Channel-friendly cloud backup provider Intronis copped a $12 million round in early November, with which it plans to hire additional employees, build its platform and expand its international market reach.

Message Bus

HQ: Corte Madera, Calif.
CEO: Jeremy LaTrasse
New Funding: $11 million
Round: A
Backers: North Bridge Venture Partners, True Ventures, Ignition Partners, James Lindenbaum, Tim Young, Jesse Robbins

Two-year-old startup Message Bus has a deceptively simple premise: provide a cloud-native application service that can move messaging across email and mobile channels. It was developed out of frustration with configuring and administering various email and message servers, the company said, and offers its application as a way to remove that frustration while also reducing cap-ex costs for users.


HQ: Natick, Mass.
CEO: Andres Rodriguez
New Funding: $20 million
Round: C
Backers: Flybridge Capital Partners, North Bridge Venture Partners, Sigma Partners, others

Nasuni develops software that lets solution providers tie local storage hardware and virtual storage appliances in remote and branch offices using public or private storage clouds to protect data -- all while providing local performance and a 100 percent availability guarantee. Its $20 million funding round was led by a "key new investor," whose identity was not disclosed by the company.

Scale Computing

HQ: Indianapolis
CEO: Jeff Ready
New Funding: $12 million
Round: D
Backers: Heron Capital Venture Fund, Reservoir Venture Partners, Allos Ventures, CID Equity Capital, Spring Mill Venture Fund, Northgate Capital, Benchmark Capital Partners and Scale Venture Partners

Scale Computing began as a builder of clustered storage and now is considered a marquee vendor in the emerging market for "hyperconverged" IT solutions that tightly integrate server, storage, network and virtualization technologies into single appliances.


HQ: Tel Aviv, Israel
CEO: Mikkel Svane
New Funding: $4.5 million
Round: B
Backers: Kaedan Capital, Zohar Gilon, Trellas Enterprises

As OTT ("over-the-top") technologies continue to gain strength as a way to drive video over the Internet, the movement is creating a number of interesting startups. One of the most intriguing is Tvinci, which describes itself as enabling "operators and media companies to create their own unified platform across various devices, including tablet devices, smartphones, connected TVs, laptops, game consults, and set-top boxes." The company says its revenue has doubled every year since 2008 and tripled in 2012 compared with 2011.