Texas Roundup: Funds for FireHost, Silvercar; UTSA Joins Microsoft

4/18/14Follow @angelashah

Here is the latest innovation news from Xconomy Texas this week:

—Cloud security company FireHost raised $25 million Wednesday in a Series E funding round, in order to pay for sales and marketing support as well as technology advances. The Richardson, TX-based company has now raised a total of $59 million in the last four years, each from Stephens Group in Arkansas. FireHost, which says it has doubled its revenue in each of the past three years, has clients such as Farmers Insurance, Terminix, and Johns Hopkins University.

Silvercar, the Austin-based rental car company, raised a $5-million debt round Tuesday.  The company, which is named for the silver Audi A4 that is its sole product offering, was founded two years ago and operates at airports in major Texas cities, and has announced plans to begin service in San Francisco and Los Angeles. In addition to its fleet of Audi sedans, the company markets a “no lines, no paperwork” policy that allows renters to pick up cars—down to unlocking the vehicle—on smartphones using its app.

The University of Texas at San Antonio and Microsoft announced a three-year agreement Wednesday to develop technologies to make data centers—which consume a lot of energy to cool and maintain the computer servers inside—more efficient. The Seattle computing giant will build a $250 million facility next to one of its existing facilities in San Antonio to support the research. The university also reported that Microsoft gave it $1 million to support for UTSA’s research and technology programs.

Angela Shah is the editor of Xconomy Texas. She can be reached at ashah@xconomy.com or (214) 793-5763. Follow @angelashah

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