Monday, 24th June 2019
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Panasas invests in the future

Panasas has received a new round of private equity investment led by the investing arm of KEWA Financial, a U.S. insurance company, and Dowroc Partners, a private investment fund comprised of investment professionals with expertise in storage technology, energy, and cloud computing. The investment will fund ongoing technology and product development and also support expansion into new markets, as well as the exploration of OEM relationships. Financial terms of the agreement were not disclosed.

The funding comes roughly three months after the game-changing launch of ActiveStor Ultra and PanFS8, a new generation of the ActiveStor storage solution, that runs on industry-standard commodity hardware. ActiveStor Ultra is a scale-out network-attached storage (NAS) appliance designed for extreme performance and scalability configurations, and is ideally suited for applications that require the processing of large and complex data sets with high precision. Common applications include climate modeling, computer-aided engineering (CAE) simulation and analysis, energy exploration and precision medicine, as well as emerging workloads such as AI and autonomous driving.

PanFS 8, the intelligent parallel filesystem, has been completely re-engineered with innovative three-tier data placement to provide maximum performance, while retaining the plug-and-play capabilities that give PanFS the lowest cost of operation of any parallel filesystem. Now portable, PanFS 8 can run on any properly configured and qualified commodity storage hardware, allowing for rapid adoption of new hardware capabilities and an expanded portfolio of hardware options.


“We aim to invest in highly innovative engineering companies that have reached a unique inflection point where technology and business opportunities align to drive strong long-term growth, and we are excited to be working with Panasas," said Robert Cihra, a partner at Dowroc Partners and a 20-year veteran Wall Street technology analyst. “We are looking forward to partnering with Panasas to accelerate product innovation and advance new market opportunities.”

With this investment, David Wiley, founder and chief executive officer of KEWA, and Cihra have joined the Panasas Board of Directors. The company also announced the addition of new board members Jonathan Lister, vice president of global sales solutions at LinkedIn, a proven sales leader and technology innovator, and Jorge Titinger, chief executive officer and founder of Titinger Consulting. Titinger is the former chief executive officer of SGI, a global leader in HPC, which was acquired by Hewlett Packard Enterprise in 2016. With the appointment of Wiley, Cihra, Lister and Titinger, the Panasas board now has seven members; other members include Faye Pairman, president and chief executive officer, Panasas; Elliot Carpenter, chief financial officer, Panasas; and Andre A. Hakkak, founder and managing partner, White Oak Global Advisors.

“The PanFS portable parallel filesystem is a game changer for the HPC industry, opening new opportunities with customers who are frustrated with the complexities of open source filesystem solutions,” said Titinger. “The ease of use of PanFS combined with the performance and cost efficiency of an integrated ActiveStor or OEM-certified deployment, will make it a highly attractive value proposition for commercial and traditional HPC applications alike.”

“This investment represents a strong vote of confidence from industry experts, not only in our technology, but also in the business growth we expect to see,” said Faye Pairman, president and chief executive officer at Panasas. ”I am pleased to be working with our new board members who bring a wide and impressive range of technology, market, and financial expertise that will help guide the company as we move forward.”

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