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Troika Takes in $14.4M

Troika Networks Inc. has picked up $14.4 million in funding, as it tries to survive in an intelligent switch market that has seen startups steadily disappear over the years.

Troika has raised a total of $81.4 million, with $27.4 million coming over two rounds since it sold off its HBA business in 2002 and made its move into switches (see JNI Buys Troika's HBA Software).

Troika will announce Thursday that its previous investors have ponied up as the Westlake Village, Calif.-based startup prepares to expand its sales and marketing. Founder and CEO Bill Terrell says Troika's strategy is to beat bigger rivals for customers, then join them as partners.

Terrell says Troika has about two dozen” customers in a market that's still in its infancy. Most of Troika’s sales have come through partnerships with virtualization software vendor StoreAge Networking Technologies Ltd. and storage companies Engenio Information Technologies Inc. and Storage Technology Corp. (StorageTek) (NYSE: STK). (See Engenio Certifies Troika, StoreAge and Troika, StoreAge Join StorageTek Alliance.)

Now Terrell wants to leverage those deals into OEM relationships. “We believe the way to control your own destiny is to take it to market, get customers to vote with their dollars, then use that traction to influence OEMs to work with us,” Terrell says.

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