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Seranoa Scores $9M MoreSeranoa Scores $9M More

A bevy of investors likes its pitch and customer traction. Can it last?

August 6, 2003

2 Min Read
Seranoa Scores $9M More

Seranoa Networks Inc. has raised $9 million in a "B" round of funding, which it plans to use to lure more customers.

You read that right: more customers. Someone is paying Seranoa for its WANport product, a box that groups together TDM circuits to avoid using up expensive router ports (see Seranoa Surfaces). The startup won't say who its customers are yet, though it was reported earlier this year that Allegiance Telecom Inc. (Nasdaq: ALGX), Broadwing Inc. (NYSE: BRW), and Pac-West Telecomm Inc. (Nasdaq: PACW) were among its prospects (see Seranoa's Slip Is Showing).

"We are impressed that despite a difficult market, Seranoa has signed revenue generating customers," says Tim Kraskey, managing director of YankeeTek Ventures, one of this round's investors, in a prepared statement.

Seranoa CEO Graham Pattison says the new funding will help the 40-employee company add at least 12 new salespeople and beef up distribution channels and marketing -- all to attract large carriers with legacy networks.

"Carriers are figuring out what new services to offer, but they need to save hard-earned dollars on equipment for existing services," he says. The WANport's value proposition is to save carriers money on TDM networking while they figure out what newfangled packet-based offerings they need.

Pattison says Seranoa's product isn't a stopgap kind of device. He believes the telecom market will have a slow ramp-up over the next couple of years. But carriers that have eked out capital expenditures month-by-month are at least thinking of new ways to add revenue. "There's a lot of noise now, and there wasn't even that six months ago," he says.

Besides YankeeTek, Advent International, FA Technology Ventures Corp., St. Paul Ventures, Schoffstall Ventures Inc., and several private investors all chipped in for Seranoa's funding. The company has raised $25 million to date.— Mary Jander, Senior Editor, Light Reading

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