Sonian Nabs $13.6M, Led By OpenView

5/31/12Follow @xconomy

OpenView Venture Partners has led a $13.6 million Series C round for Newton, MA-based Sonian, marking the Boston-based venture firm’s first investment in a company native to Boston.

Return Sonian investors Prism VentureWorks and Summerhill Venture Partners also participated in the deal for the developer of archiving software for the cloud. In January 2011, Sonian raised a $9 million Series B round from Prism, Summerhill, Amazon, and Webroot Software.

OpenView’s Scott Maxwell joins the board as part of the deal. OpenView focuses on startups that are in “expansion” stage, essentially, business-to-business software companies earning $2 million to $20 million in annual sales and wanting to get to $100 million in revenue. Earlier this year the venture firm invested in a Series B round for Exinda, a network optimization technology company that started in Australia and moved to Boston.

In each of the past two years, Sonian’s customer base has doubled for its software, which “stores and makes searchable electronic data,” CEO Jeff Dickerson told Xconomy. As soon as e-mails are exchanged among clients, the Sonian software stores it, makes it searchable, and can also index about 400 different file types as attachments. The software works across public clouds such as Amazon’s, IBM’s, and Rackspace’s. Sonian’s 9,000-odd customer organizations include small and medium-size businesses and publicly traded companies.

The financing will help Sonian branch out a bit beyond its e-mail archiving focus, Dickerson says. The company hopes to work with partners in archiving information found in files such as CAD drawings and medical images, he says.

“We see this market as the wild west,” Dickerson says of the cloud archiving space.

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