Startup Aeluros Snags $10M

The world of fabless startups raising capital in the 10 Gigabit Ethernet and Fiber Channel space is getting more crowded these days, as Mountain View, Calif.-based Aeluros announced a $10 million Series B round of financing last week.

The round was led by UOB Venture Management Ltd., the investment arm and a subsidiary of one of Singapore’s largest banks, United Overseas Bank Ltd.

Aeluros (named after the Greek word for cat-like) also raised money in the round from previous investors New Enterprise Associates and Worldview Technology Partners.

The company has raised $20 million to date.

A host of firms in the 10 GigaBit Per Second (GBPS) Ethernet arena have raised at least $300 million over the last two years, including: Quake Technologies, KeyEye Communications, Ikanos Communications, NetEffect, Greenfield Networks, BigBear Networks, SolarFlare Communications and Phyworks.

Forest Baskett, an NEA venture partner, acknowledges that Quake Technologies, which has received more than $42 million from backers Mohr Davidow Ventures and Vengrowth is a competitor for Aeluros.

Another is Greenfield, which has raised more than $46 million from investors Global Catalyst, JPMorgan Partners, Sequoia Capital and Walden International, according to the MoneyTree Survey from PricewaterhouseCoopers, Thomson Venture Economics (publisher of PE Week) and the National Venture Capital Association.

Baskett says that each of the startups in the sector have a distinction. For instance, some target the undefined 10 Gigabit Ethernet over copper developing market, while others, including Aeluros, direct their efforts to the optical component market where they supply manufacturers, such as Agilent, JDS Uniphase and Sumitomo.

Greenfield ships its networking products to Cisco Systems, Force 10 Networks and Foundry Networks.

Baskett says the Series B investment will carry Aeluros for 18 months, as the company heads into what he describes as an exploding market for switches, routers and servers.