UK-based hybrid cloud provider Zynstra has completed the second funding round of $8.4m (£4.9m), bringing the total amount it has raised in its first year since public launch to more than $12m (£7.1m).
The provider of cloud managed server appliances for small and medium sized businesses (SMBs) will use the funds to further invest in cloud computing innovation, growing its UK channel presence and entering into the North American market.
Bath-based Zynstra completed a $3.8m series A funding round in September 2013.
The latest funding round was led by Octopus Investments with additional investors including Richard Brennan, former executive vice president for global marketing at Orange Group, Tom Vari, former CIO of Cable at Rogers Communications and Jon Craton, Zynstra’s chairman and former founder, and chief executive of Cramer.
Zynstra’s SMB customers include online designer furniture retailer Made.com, software developer Concorde Solutions, and personalised phone brand Ownfone, which makes simple, personalised phone devices for senior citizens and children.
Zynstra launched its hybrid cloud solution in July 2013 and has announced three cloud services this year to support its hybrid cloud portfolio.
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It includes Office 365 Connect, Education, and SMB IT appliances, all designed to deliver the blend of on-premise and cloud IT services with the economics typically associated with the public cloud, according to the company.
“In three years, the market has moved relentlessly in our direction, embracing a hybrid approach to IT,” said Zynstra co-founder and chief executive Nick East.
“Businesses are reconsidering the way they purchase technology – seeking a significantly lower administrative burden, greater flexibility and a predictable opex [operating expenses] payment model.”
According to East, the enterprise sector is about to face one of the largest server infrastructure refreshes of recent times when the Windows Server 2003 platform reaches the end of support in July 2015.
“It’s a compelling time to consider refreshing an IT estate, and a hybrid approach is becoming the new norm,” he said.
The company’s products support businesses migrating from Microsoft’s small business server and Windows Server 2003 to a managed hybrid cloud.
MADE.com, the bespoke furniture company became a Zynstra customer earlier this year. “We’re growing fast, both in the UK and overseas, so we needed an office IT solution that is easy and supports our expansion plans,” said Jonathan Howell, chief technology officer at Made.com. “Zynstra has helped us to achieve consistency internally and free up our time to work on other more strategic projects.”
From the outset it was clear that this really is the right time for hybrid IT technology in the SMB market, said Frederic Lardieg, a member of the Ventures team at Octopus Investments. “The UK has seen fantastic development and we’re confident that Zynstra will bring the same success to North America when they launch in that market.”