Cloud storage provider Box.net just closed additional Series D funding that brings the round’s total to $81 million. The latest money came from SAP Ventures–the investment arm of enterprise software giant SAP AG (s SAP)–as well as Salesforce.com (s CRM), Bessemer Venture Partners and NEA.
Box.net CEO Aaron Levie said this latest investment is an extension to the earlier D round that raised $48 million from Andreessen Horowitz, Draper Fisher Jurvetson Growth, among others. Those early investors also ponied up additional funds this time around. Altogether, Box.net has taken in $162 million in venture funding since it was founded in 2005.
Box.net’s mission is to help people store and manage their work and personal data, and the new cash will help the San Francisco-based company fuel its enterprise push, Levie said. Box.net is trying to differentiate itself from more consumer-oriented cloud storage services like Dropbox.
Toward that end, the company plans to launch the Box Innovation Network (BIN), “an ecosystem of like-minded partners and startups,” next month, Levie said.
BIN will be more than a feel-good group: “There will be some deliverables: Our platform is already used by a couple thousand developers with 150 apps … We want to expand that. We want it to be dead simple to share and collaborate around your stored data … there is far too little innovation oriented towards enterprise software.”
The company’s service already ties into 120 applications, including Salesforce.com’s flagship CRM and Chatter social network offering, NetSuite, Google Apps and SAP StreamWork. The goal is to expand the platform and that cooperation to more companies.
Levie claims Box.net is used by 77 percent of Fortune 500 companies, including such behemoths as Procter & Gamble and he talks a lot about customer traction and growth. What’s not clear is how profitable all that activity is.
Box.net has a pretty impressive roster of vendor partners, but such alliances don’t always generate real cooperation. Clearly, the SAP, Salesforce.com and NetSuite alliances could mean better business credibility, but simply announcing a partner program doesn’t necessarily make a company more enterprise ready.
Image courtesy of Box.net