Feeds

Schooner nabs $20m in venture funding

And a storage hired hand

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

Money might be tight right now, but venture capitalists are still cutting checks for ideas they think have a chance of going big out there in IT Land.

So it is with Schooner Information Technology, a Silicon Valley startup that came out of stealth mode in April with x64-based web-caching and database-acceleration appliances, and which today announced that it has landed $20m in Series B funding.

Schooner was founded in February 2007 by John Busch, who was the technologist behind the HP 3000 minicomputer line and who eventually ran Sun Labs (the research arm of the soon-to-be-former Sun Microsystems), and Tom McWilliams, who was a supercomputer designer at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory and who eventually did stints at Amdahl, Silicon Graphics, Sun, and PathScale.

Busch and McWilliams lined up their first round of funding ($15m) from CMEA Capital and Redpoint Ventures, which gave Schooner the money to create its own black-boxed, closed-source clone of the popular memcached web-caching appliance.

Schooner's box, however, knows how to take advantage of the multiple cores and threads in modern x64 chips - unlike the open-source memcached program.

The Schooner Memcached appliance costs $45,000, which is a lot for a two-socket, rebadged IBM System x server, but the appliance can replace up to eight servers running the open-source memcached appliance, allowing customers to save money on space, power, cooling, software licenses, and other operational costs.

The initial round of funding was also used to create the Schooner MySQL appliance. This unit puts a highly optimized version of the InnoDB 1.0.3 transactional storage engine in a System x box equipped with solid state disks and an OEMed version of Sun's MySQL 5.1 Enterprise Edition database, which Schooner has shown in benchmark tests can deliver about eight times the oomph of a plain vanilla x64 server running Linux and MySQL. The MySQL appliance costs $45,000 as well.

The second round of funding at Schooner was led by Menlo Ventures, which has investments in storage vendors 3Par and LSI Logic (among many other tech firms), with participation again from CMEA Capital and Redpoint Ventures. CMEA doesn't brag about its investments, but Redpoint is proud to point out that it has invested in networking vendor Juniper Networks as well as MySpace, Netflix, and Tivo.

Schooner says that it will be using the money to further expand product development and build out its sales and support operations.

The company also said today that it has hired Mark Lohmeyer to be vice president of products at Schooner, giving him control over strategy, engineering, and marketing for Schooner's appliances. Lohmeyer was formerly product development manager and then general manager for the Veritas Cluster Server group at Symantec, where Schooner says his team, working from the United States, India, and China, accounted for more than $300m in global sales each year.

Schooner has not yet said how many of its appliances it has sold since its formal launch in April, or how many customers it has bagged so far. ®

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

More from The Register

next story
Docker's app containers are coming to Windows Server, says Microsoft
MS chases app deployment speeds already enjoyed by Linux devs
IBM storage revenues sink: 'We are disappointed,' says CEO
Time to put the storage biz up for sale?
'Hmm, why CAN'T I run a water pipe through that rack of media servers?'
Leaving Las Vegas for Armenia kludging and Dubai dune bashing
Facebook slurps 'paste sites' for STOLEN passwords, sprinkles on hash and salt
Zuck's ad empire DOESN'T see details in plain text. Phew!
Windows 10: Forget Cloudobile, put Security and Privacy First
But - dammit - It would be insane to say 'don't collect, because NSA'
Symantec backs out of Backup Exec: Plans to can appliance in Jan
Will still provide support to existing customers
VMware's tool to harden virtual networks: a spreadsheet
NSX security guide lands in intriguing format
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Cloud and hybrid-cloud data protection for VMware
Learn how quick and easy it is to configure backups and perform restores for VMware environments.
Three 1TB solid state scorchers up for grabs
Big SSDs can be expensive but think big and think free because you could be the lucky winner of one of three 1TB Samsung SSD 840 EVO drives that we’re giving away worth over £300 apiece.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.