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Force10 Round Hits $113M

Force10 Networks, just two weeks after bringing in over $50 million in Series F funding, has racked up an additional $60 million as part of the same round, according to documents filed with the SEC. (See Force10 Takes $51 Million.)

The 10-Gbit/s Ethernet switch specialist quietly clinched the first slice of funding a couple of weeks ago, raising over $50 million in an equity offering to 43 investors. A document filed with the SEC a few days ago reveals that the firm has significantly extended the scope of this offering, bringing in more than $113 million from a total of 63 investors.

Execs at Force10 refused to comment on the round, which brings the vendor's total funding to north of $400 million and once again casts a spotlight on its IPO plans. (See Force10 Orders One More Round and Force10: Where's the Exit? .)

There has been speculation that Force10, which saw its initial plans for a public offering stalled by the bugaboo of Sarbanes Oxley compliance back in 2005, was planning to go public within the next few months. (See Force10 IPO Still Hanging.)

At least one analyst thinks the cash influx may be a sign that Force10 intends to postpone its IPO. "My understanding is that the initial $50 million was to tide them over until their IPO and do some market expansion," says Joe Chiasson, equity analyst for telecom equipment at Susquehanna Financial Group. "Unless they have aspirations of doing a small M&A deal, south of $100 million, the only other explanation is that the S-1 is further out than we thought."

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