Pure Storage, the enterprise solid state storage entrepreneur, has raised an impressive $150 million. The company claims it’s the largest single private round in the history of storage. It is also the third largest financing round in a North American business technology company this year, according to Bloomberg data. The investment values the company at $1 billion.
The round was led by T. Rowe Price, Tiger Global Management and other public market investors, with participation by its previous venture capital investors Greylock Partners, Index Ventures, Redpoint Ventures, Samsung Ventures and Sutter Hill Ventures. The round brings the company’s total financing to $245 million, and follows its Series B of $40 million last year.
“In our view, Pure represents a rare combination of disruptive innovation, strong leadership, and strong growth. In particular, customer references were excellent,” said Henry Ellenbogen of T. Rowe Price Associates, Inc. “We look forward to working with Pure as they scale and strive toward becoming a public company.”
Pure Storage produces Flash Array, a solid state storage solution that lowers the price of flash storage to about $5 per gigabyte. The company essentially makes solid state storage at a price comparable to traditional storage, but at 10x its speed, space and power efficiency.
The money will be used to bolster R&D efforts as well as expand internationally. It also helps prepare the company for an IPO, the company indicated in a press release. Over the last 10 months, the company has extended into 10 new countries, including the U.K., Netherlands, Norway, South Africa, Denmark, Poland, Germany, Japan, Korea, Australia, and Singapore.
Along with the funding, the company also announced adding former Data Domain CEO Frank Slootman to its board.
“Pure Storage is experiencing much of what we did at Data Domain,” said Slootman. “They’re replacing one storage media (disk) with another (flash). They pioneered the use of inline data reduction to remove the cost hurdle for the media upgrade, and, as a result of being the first to get this right they are growing about as fast as companies can grow organically. I am glad to be able to offer my own perspective in driving and managing growth to the top tier board of directors and leadership team at Pure.”
Pure Storage competes against legacy storage solutions EMC Corp and NetApp, which offers flash storage solutions at a much higher rate of $20 to $50 per gigabyte. It also competes against startups such as Nimble Storage and Skyera. Earlier this month, Skyera released its latest generation (link to “Skyera’s Latest Gen Boosts Data Capacity by 10X for ½ the Price” shared on Google Docs but not published) that offers flash for $1.99 per gigabyte, or 49 cents after data deduplication techniques are applied.