S. Mohan and Nikhil Jhingan co-founded Accellion, a Palo Alto, CA and Singapore-based provider of email attachment caching technology, has been profiled in Red Herring's "VC in Asia" column.
The article titled "Singapore garage to Silicon Valley startup" describes how Accellion, which started out in Singapore (under the name Space Disk) as a provider of distributed file storage software, re-positioned itself to focus on the problem posed by large email attachments.
The spark was provided by one of Accellion's existing clients: global advertising agency Ogilvy & Mather. O&M was spending a lot of money on courier companies like FedEx to send creative work and other material between its offices and to clients around the world. The company could not use email to send these documents since the typical file size is 500 MB or more.
The Accellion team realized that "sending big files is just like syncing them" and hence, their existing technology could be modified and made to work with email. Accellion's solution for O&M (and now, other clients): an appliance which strips out the attachments, lightens the load and speeds up the enterprise email system.
Accellion, which moved headqaurters to the US in 2001, has raised over $22 million in funding. In its latest round of funding, in October 2001, the company raised $9.3 million from Baring Private Equity Partners Asia (the lead investor) with participation from TiNSHED (an Asia-Pacific-focused Angel fund).
According to the Red Herring article, Accellion is currently executing pilot projects for several Fortune 500 companies. It has less than 100 employees and has not yet crossed $20 million in revenues.
S. Mohan, Accellion's Chief Strategist and Vice-Chairman, served as CEO until February 2001. Before founding Accellion, Mohan consulted with Datapro as head of the Asia-Pacific custom consulting division.
Nikhil Jhingan, Accellion's CTO, was earlier a Senior Developer and Director at NyeQ Technologies in New Delhi, India. Before that Jhingan co-founded TouchBeam Systems and led the embedded systems software engineering team there. He is a graduate of IIT-Delhi.
For more information:
Click Here to read the full Red Herring article.
Click Here to visit the Accellion web site.