Mountain View, Calif.-based Violin creates flash memory storage systems that get around the bottlenecks of slower hard drives in data center servers. GridIron creates applications that accelerate the performance of enterprise applications running on servers. It can speed up online transaction processing, data warehouses, virtualization, and big data analytics. As such, the companies complement each other.
“The acquisition of GridIron Systems complements and expands Violin Memory’s strategy of offering memory-based solutions that accelerate business critical applications while optimizing IT infrastructures,” said Don Basile, chief executive of Violin Memory. “The expanded talent, technology and intellectual property position Violin Memory at the forefront of the ongoing transformation of enterprise data centers to memory-based architectures.”
GridIron focuses on storage area network caches, where it speeds up the performance of applications running on Violin’s flash memory arrays. It does so by analyzing input-output access patterns and caching the active data for an applications, said Som Sikdar, founder and chief technology officer of GridIron Systems.
Violin’s storage systems have as many as 3,000 flash memory chips in a one enclosure, and the company’s software allows a data center operator to manage it as a single storage element, said Ashish Gupta, director of product marketing at Violin, in an interview with VentureBeat. Violin buys its chips from Toshiba and applies its own secret sauce to them. Violin’s main rival is EMC.
Violin Memory was founded in 2005 and it has 450 employees. The company reportedly filed for an initial public offering. Last year, Violin raised a $50 million fourth-round, bringing its total venture capital funding to $172 million. At that time, it was valued at more than $800 million. GridIron has raised about $30 million since its founding in 2007.
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