LeftHand Picks Up a Bundle

LeftHand Networks has closed on a $25 million third round of funding, bring the iSCSI SAN vendor’s haul to $75 million to date.

Valhalla Partners led the round, with new participation from JPMorgan Chase and funding from all previous investors.

LeftHand said it will use the money to expand global sales and support for IP SAN solutions based on its SAN/iQ software. The company will enter new markets in Asia and expand its European presence.

“The value of LeftHand is in its storage software,” said Tony Asaro, senior analyst at Enterprise Strategy Group. “LeftHand provides intelligence for clustered network storage, thin provisioning, virtual partitioning, snapshots, remote mirroring and other valuable capabilities that create a next-generation storage system. ESG has found that customers embrace SAN/iQ once they hear the story, and LeftHand is smartly using this next round of funding to expand its market reach.”

LeftHand, which claims more than 3,000 installations to date, said the funding round will carry it to profitability. The company was early to the IP SAN market, introducing its first product in 2001, but has faced tough competition from top-tier OEMs as the market for IP SANs has heated up. According to IDC’s most recent numbers, Network Appliance and EMC combined to take two-thirds of the iSCSI SAN market in the second quarter. The iSCSI SAN market grew at a blistering 140% rate in the quarter, according to IDC.

LeftHand says it stands out from competitors by offering an affordable, highly scalable, full-featured approach based on commodity hardware.

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