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Carrier WiFi

Friday Funding Roundup

A real mixed bag of wireless and mobile companies made it in this week's VC cash dash.

AirTight Networks Inc. : There's still plenty of money to be had in catering to corporate fears about WiFi insecurity. If Aruba Networks Inc. (Nasdaq: ARUN)'s recent IPO didn't fully illustrate that point then this week's $14.5 million round for AirTight should hammer it home. (See Aruba Files for IPO.)

The series C round was led by CMEA Ventures and joined by existing investors. Mountain View, Calif.-based AirTight has raised nearly $37 million in venture capital in its five years of operation.

The mobile security market is still dense with startups and major vendors competing for enterprise dollars, including firms such as AirDefense Inc. and AirMagnet Inc. [Ed Note: Strange that there's never been a wireless security company called AirLock.] AirTight is planning to launch a new version of its SpectraGuard Safe software this month, which provides threat detection and prevention capabilities across multiple local and wide-area wireless networks.

Telsima Corp. : The Santa Clara, Calif.-based equipment vendor's $50 million round this week shows that the air hasn't gone out of the WiMax hype bubble quite yet. VC firms are still willing to flash the cash for WiMax, even if the recent Clearwire LLC (Nasdaq: CLWR) IPO shows that everyday investors are more cautious about this largely untested market. (See Telsima Gets $50M. and Clearwire's Bubble Bursts.)

Samplify Systems Inc. : Data compression can be used to eke more performance out of existing wireless networks and devices, which is especially useful for cellular carriers that want to squeeze a little bit more life out of networks that they might have invested billions to install. Santa Clara, Calif.-based Samplify has developed chips that it says can compress data at a ratio of up to 8:1 and can be used across a broad range of industries including the wireless business. Charles River Ventures and Formative Ventures have put together a $6.5 million series A round for the company.

Ensequence Inc. : This Portland, Ore.-based video firm has completed a $40 million VC series C round that it says will allow it to continue worldwide expansion with new offices in New York and Los Angeles. The company has developed a system that can push video across TVs, PCs, and mobile devices.

— Dan Jones, Site Editor, Unstrung

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