ConSentry lands more funding

* ConSentry Networks lands $9.4 million in funding

Even in these hard economic times ConSentry Networks has managed to land another round of funding - this one for $9.4 million.

The company says it will use the money to expand its international marketing, to grow the number of channel partners that sell ConSentry gear and to support those partners it already has.

Founded in 2003, the company has had seemingly little trouble raising money, and the latest round brings its total to $80.4 million, borrowed in five installments, roughly one per year. The latest round was gathered from existing investors.

ConSentry is significantly different from other NAC vendors in that it started out selling switches that enforce access policies in addition to separate appliances that either enforce the policies themselves or influence other network devices to do so.

These smart switches have layer 7 intelligence and knowledge of users’ identities, roles and what machines they are using to access the network, making for finer control over access.

Apparently this difference inspires confidence in ConSentry’s investors, who keep going to the cash flowing. But the task of bringing the company to profitability apparently required a new set of key managers.

Starting last year the company replaced its CEO and since then has also added three new vice presidents – for marketing and sales, marketing and engineering. It’s pretty plain why. The company has a difficult task to unseat legacy switch vendors whose gear is already deployed in business wiring closets.

Most of these competitors, while they don’t have the ground-up intelligent design of ConSentry gear, they are making their switches more intelligent and offer their own NAC products.

Businesses considering NAC have to worry that their NAC vendor might not be around in a year or two as the market draws tighter. The new money and new executives at ConSentry indicate the company has life left in it, at least for awhile.

Copyright © 2009 IDG Communications, Inc.

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