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Box raises £80m in latest funding round

Investors say Box sits at the centre of shift to the cloud

Enterprise cloud storage and collaboration vendor Box has announced a new round of investment worth $125 million (£80m), which it plans to use to grow its enterprise customer base and drive global expansion.

The round was led by global growth investor General Atlantic (GA). Other participants include current Box investors Bessemer Venture Partners, DFJ Growth, New Enterprise Associates, SAP Ventures and Scale Venture Partners, as well as new investor Social + Capital Partnership.

The investment is subject to regulatory approval and is expected to close in the next 30 days.

The company also announced the appointment of Gary Reiner, operating partner at GA and former CIO of General Electric (GE), to its board of directors. Reiner is currently an operating partner with General Atlantic, and co-led GA's investment in Box.

"We believe Box is on the path to becoming the next great enterprise software company," said Reiner.

"The move to the cloud is one of the most transformative shifts in the history of enterprise technology, and many CIOs are reevaluating and re-architecting their organisations' IT strategies to take advantage of this trend.

"Box sits at the centre of this shift, and is well positioned to help enterprises make the transition, which is already redefining how people collaborate and businesses compete."

Meanwhile, Brett Rochkind, who also co-led the investment, will serve as an observer on the board of directors and contribute his on-the-ground experience with GA in the US, Europe, Latin America and Asia to support Box with its global expansion.

Box has so far raised $287 million in funding. The company reported that, in the first half of 2012, enterprise sales increased 200 percent year-over-year, and average deal size nearly doubled in the same period.

Last month, Box announced expanded operations in Europe with the opening of a London office, as well as a third data centre to support its growing customer base.

The company claims that more than 120,000 businesses and individuals at 92 percent of the Fortune 500 use Box to manage information and collaboration in the cloud. Customers include Procter & Gamble, DreamWorks, AAA, McAfee, Netflix and Random House.

Box plans eventually to go public at a valuation of between $2 billion and $3 billion, and could file for an initial public offering (IPO) next year, people familiar with the matter told the Wall Street Journal.

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