RainStor, Big Data Player, Gets Extra $12M Venture Capital Investment

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By David Zielenziger | October 4, 2012 8:24 PM EST

RainStor, a private San Francisco developer of “big data” software, said it had raised an additional $12 million in venture capital, raising its cumulative total to $23 million.

Annual revenue is around $10 million and operations are “very close” to profitability, said CEO John Bantleman. The new cash will be deployed to bolster RainStor’s sales and marketing.

With a current payroll around 40, split between developers and support staff. RainStor has already sold its Big Data Retention and Big Data Hadoop products to enterprises including Credit Suisse (NYSE: CS) and Dow Chemical Co. (NYSE: DOW), both investors in the company.

Other participants in the new round include Canada’s Rogers Venture Partners as well as Doughty Hanson Technology Ventures and Storm Ventures.

RainStor, which took its name because its products   store data like rain in the cloud, also has some key resellers and partners including Hewlett-Packard Co. (NYSE: HPQ), the No. 1 computer company; Dell (Nasdaq: DELL), the No. 3 PC maker; Teradata Corp. (Nasdaq: TDTA) and Amdocs Ltd. (NYSE: DOX).

Bantleman said RainStor’s advantages over established software developers such as Oracle (Nasdaq: ORCL), the No. 1 database developer, is that it’s relatively new and runs on all platforms.

“Oracle is 40 years old and its products run on a single box,” the CEO said.

RainStor’s systems are scalable and can adapt as enterprises deal with increasingly large pools of data, into the terabyte and petabyte zones (a terabyte is a billion bytes of data; a petabyte is a quadrillion bytes).

The company, founded in 2004 by a group who’d worked on the concept in the UK Defense Ministry, has two patents with many more in the pipeline, the CEO said.

“We have a huge IT portfolio,” he added.

 Voytek Siewierski, of Rogers Ventures, linked to Canada’s Rogers Communications Inc. (NYSE: RCI), said it had bankrolled the company because its team is “contributing significantly to the big data opportunity.”

Peter Norley, Credit Suisse COO of equities and global arbitrage trading, said RainStor’s products were especially suited for global financial institutions.

“We invest in technology companies where we see tremendous value for our own business,” he said.

Shares of Oracle closed Wednesday at $31.80, up 15 cents. They've gained 24 percent in 2012.

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