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Virtualization Startup Seals $12M

U.K. chip startup VirtenSys emerged from the shadows and clinched $12 million in Series A funding today, as the market for PCI Express-based I/O virtualization slowly cranks up. (See VirtenSys Secures $12M.)

VirtenSys, which is still in stealth mode, will use the funding to launch virtual switch hardware sometime next year. "It's a PCI Express-based switch with I/O virtualization features," explains Tony Palmer, the VirtenSys CEO. "The money is to complete our first product development and start generating our first revenues."

While Palmer's keeping specifics of his company's technology under wraps, he claims the startup already has lined up one "tier one" OEM that produces storage and networking products and a "tier 2" partner in the shape of a server interconnect vendor.

VirtenSys is one of a number of I/O virtualization specialists, including firms such as PLX and NextIO, developing small form factor PCI Express-based technologies that can be deployed in server and storage systems. (See PLX Tests PCI and PLX Unveils 64-Bit 66MHz PCI Bridge.)

But it is still very early days for this market, according to Jag Bolaria, senior research analyst at the Linley Group. "That stuff is so new," he says, explaining that standards for PCI Express virtualization are still being finalized.

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