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Startup Seeks Success in Search

A dynamic duo is at it again. After getting two file system software startups up and running, the founders of CrosStor Software and Tacit Networks Inc. have settled on enterprise search for their next project.

Tim Williams and Gordon Harris have been working for more than a year on their third new company, called Index Engines Inc. Williams and Harris sold CrosStor to EMC Corp. (NYSE: EMC)
in 2000, then moved on to file-caching vendor Tacit Networks (see Tacit Makes Funding Explicit). Now, as Index Engines's CEO and CTO, respectively, Williams, and Harris expect to come out of stealth early next year with what they call a SAN-based enterprise search application.

That application was developed after the founders decided there is a screaming need -- fueled partly by compliance requirements -- for companies to rapidly sift through mounds of corporate data. One application we found was ripe for a startup was enterprise search,” Williams says. “No one’s addressing it effectively.”

The Holmdel, N.J.-based startup has 11 employees, mostly developers, and is privately funded by the founders. They plan to go to venture capitalists for an expansion round next year after releasing their product.

If Index Engines hopes to fill a market void, it might have to move fast. Competitors include EMC, whose Documentum includes enterprise search features (see Legato Embeds Verity's Search and EMC Delivers Content Integration).
Google also recently announced plans to beef up the enterprise features in its search appliance. The enhancements will allow Google to dig deeper into enterprise data rather than just search Web-related information.
Other enterprise search venders include Verity Inc. and Fast.

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