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Druva Software Raises $5 Mln From Sequoia, IAN

Druva Software, a Pune-based start-up that makes proprietary backup software solutions for laptops, has raised $5 million in Series A funding (funding that follows seed funding) from Sequoia Capital India and Indian Angel Network (IAN). The stake picked up by the venture capital investors was not disclosed. The money will be used to expand the three-year old company's marketing and sales footprint overseas, including in Europe and the US. So far, it has relied largely on Web-based channels to sell its products in those markets.
 
"We will now have offices in the UK, mainland Europe, Singapore and the US," says Jaspreet Singh, co-founder and CEO of Druva. Singh teamed up with Ramani Kothandaraman, chairman and managing director, and Milind Borate, chief technology officer, in 2007 to set up the company. "We noticed that across companies, 80 per cent of data is duplicated," he says. Druva, therefore, developed a software that would allow companies to cut out this duplication and enable laptops to work faster as well as increase storage capacity. It claims 400 corporate customers across 23 countries. Globally, the laptop backup software market is estimated at $350 million annually, according to Singh.
 
Druva had earlier raised seed funding from the Delhi-based Indian Angel Network and Hong Kong-based Accord International. With the latest round of funding, the total raised by the company so far stands at $5.2 million, says Singh. "India is traditionally an IT services country. When we saw that Druva was developing a continuous data protection product, which is the next level of back-up technology, we decided to fund them," says Rehan Yar Khan, who represents IAN on the Druva board. Sequoia could not be reached for comments.      
 
The idea for Druva was born when the founders were colleagues at the former Veritas Software (merged with Symantec in 2005) operations in Pune. There have been some hiccups along the way. Druva  Replicator, the company's first product, which provides real-time server replication software, did not find any takers. But Druva inSync, which is the laptop backup product, clicked. "We found that clients were willing to experiment with a new brand for their laptops but did not want to take similar risks with their servers," says IAN's Khan. Some of the company's earliest clients include NASA and the US Marine Corps. Druva Phoenix, Khan says, is now beginning to gain traction in the market.   
 
smita dot sengupta at abp dot in


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