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Expand Gets $21M

WAN optimization specialist Expand Networks has picked up $21 million in its sixth round of funding and is now looking to grow its global presence.

The F round was led by new investor Vertex Venture Capital and Discount Investment Corporation. Existing investors Tamir Fishman Venture Capital and Challenge Fund-Etgar also participated, bringing the vendor's total funding to $74 million.

The round caps a busy period for Expand, which saw Elie Barr replace Zohar Pearl as the vendor's CEO and the acquisition of WAFS specialist DiskSites. (See Expand Snaps Up DiskSites and Expand Acquires DiskSites.) Last month, Expand also announced a partnership with Huawei-3Com (H3C), which will see routers from H3C (now completely owned by 3Com) equipped with integral WAN optimization from Expand later this year. (See Expand Signs With H3C, Expand Teams With H3C, China: Storage Superpower?, and Chinese Shockwaves.)

Expand CEO Elie Barr told Byte & Switch that a sizeable chunk of the F round will be used to increase the vendor's presence in Asia-Pacific, adding additional partners and improving sales support in China, Korea, and Australia. "It's a question of putting more flesh on the existing infrastructure," he says, adding that similar efforts are underway in Europe.

The vendor is also planning to grow its workforce from 150 to between 250 and 270 over the next 12 months. This will mainly be in areas such as R&D, sales, support, marketing, and managing OEM deals, according to Barr.

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