Follow The Money: 10 Recent VC Tech Investments To Watch In January 2013

New Year's Pay

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 six weeks worthy of industry attention. Here's a look at the latest notable infusions -- and the companies that drove them.


HQ: New York
CEO: Chet Kanojia
New Funding: $38 million
Round: B
Backers: IAC, Highland Capital Partners, FirstMark Capital, First Round Capital, High Line Venture Partners, others

Aereo's created quite a buzz in the worlds of pay television and media connectivity thanks to a platform that allows users to access broadcast television using compatible mobile devices while on the go. The idea, according to Aereo, is that users can pause, rewind or fast-forward any program they're watching live in much the same way they can with their home DVR system. Membership plans begin at $1/day, $8/month or $80/year, and Aereo plans to launch in 22 cities over the course of 2013.

Cloud Sherpas

HQ: Atlanta
CEO: David Northington
New Funding: $40 million
Round: Unspecified
Backers: Columbia Capital, Delta-V Capital, Greenspring Associates, Queensland Investment Corp. of Australia

As cloud-focused solution providers go, Cloud Sherpas is a commanding player. A top Google and partner, Cloud Sherpas confirmed $40 million in fresh funding in late December and also announced its latest acquisition of Encinitas, Calif.-based CloudTrigger. More M&A moves are expected this year, said CEO Northington.

Cloud Velocity

HQ: Santa Clara, Calif.
CEO: Rajeev Chawla
New Funding: $5 million
Round: A
Backers: Mayfield Fund

Into the fast-crowding arena of cloud automation providers comes Cloud Velocity, which emerged from stealth mode in early December. Cloud Velocity's offering is based on a patent-pending software platform called One Hybrid Cloud that allows enterprise users to discover, blueprint, clone and migrate applications between data centers and the public cloud. The idea is to effect faster, more efficient integration with Amazon Web Services' EC2, including full server, networking, security and storage integration. More public cloud platforms will be added this year, the company says.


HQ: Milpitas, Calif.
CEO: David DeWalt
New Funding: $50 million
Round: F
Backers: Sequoia Capital, Norwest Venture Partners, Goldman Sachs, Juniper Networks, Silicon Valley Bank, others

Does IT security have a hotter startup right now than FireEye? The company, whose technology is intended to stop zero-day, APT and other "next-gen" security threats that get around traditional security platforms, reported $100 million and a more-than-100 percent increase in bookings in 2012. Among other key moves, it reeled in ex-McAfee CEO Dave DeWalt as chief executive, and in early January confirmed six additional new executive team members, including AVAST, Cisco, EMC, McAfee and Ensighta veterans.

Leap Motion

HQ: San Francisco
CEO: Michael Buckwald
New Funding: $30 million
Round: B
Backers: Highland Capital Partners, others

Motion-control software is in the spotlight thanks to companies like Leap Motion, whose technology can track movements to 1/100th of a millimeter with no lag time, the company claims. The Leap Motion controller itself has a 150-degree field of view, and it can track individual hands and fingers at a rate of 290 frames per second. Leap Motion said in early January that it plans to use the latest VC infusion to scale manufacturing in preparation of the controller's retail launch later this year.


HQ: Mountain View, Calif.
CEO: Adrian Ionel
New Funding: $10 million
Round: A
Backers: Intel Capital, Dell Ventures, WestSummit Capital, others

Decade-old systems integrator Mirantis was another solution provider that put together a tidy VC purse in the past few weeks. Mirantis will use the money to extend its reach as a provider of cloud deployments for enterprises using OpenStack. Mirantis three years ago shifted its business to work on solutions for OpenStack environments exclusively, and its customers include Cisco, NetApp, AT&T, Gap, PayPal and others.


HQ: Menlo Park, Calif.
CEO: Yossi Cohen
New Funding: $16 million
Round: D
Backers: Battery Ventures, Benchmark Capital, Hasso Plattner Ventures, others

An emerging player in the ERP testing and upgrade automation world is Panaya, which offers an all-SaaS solution to provide visibility and control over how business applications change during a systems' lifecycle. Most of Panaya's 850 customers are SAP customers, the company says, but since introducing a version of its platform for Oracle's E-Business Suite, it now has more than 100 Oracle customers, too.


HQ: Copenhagen/San Francisco
CEO: Allan Thorvaldsen
New Funding: $900,000
Round: Seed
Backers: Jakob Roed, Morten Stromsted, other private investors

Panorama9 is a Danish startup that in mid-December confirmed $900,000 from private investors in Denmark to help grow its burgeoning U.S. presence. The company offers a Web-based management dashboard designed to simplify how companies track all of their premise- and cloud-based IT assets. It launched in the U.S. in April 2012 and, according to the company, has increased new customer sign-ups by 20 percent every month since then. CEO Thorvaldsen, a serial entrepreneur, sold his previous startup Softscan to Symantec in 2009.

SR Labs

HQ: New York
CEO: Srinivasan Ramiah
New Funding: $53 million
Round: unspecified
Backers: Insight Venture Partners, others

Six-year-old SR Labs' specialty is low-latency market data and exchange-connectivity solutions for financial market customers, including investment banks, hedge funds, proprietary trading firms and trading technology software specialists. The company plans to use its $53 million round to accelerate its growth outside North America by expanding sales and marketing operations.


HQ: Whippany, N.J.
CEO: Dan Crain
New Funding: $31 million
Round: C
Backers: SanDisk, others

Whiptail has built buzz as one of the first storage companies out there to begin shipping all flash-based storage arrays. The company's latest round of funding included participation from SanDisk as well as an unnamed "Silicon Valley industry titan," believed to be Cisco. Each of the company's product lines, the Accela single-chassis all-flash arrays and the Invicta enterprise-class arrays, features 100 percent solid state technology.