Zenprise, a company offering tools for IT departments to manage their team’s smartphones, has raised $9 million in new funding.
The use of consumer-friendly smartphones in large companies has surged in the past year or so, especially with the addition of business and security features to the iPhone, said chief executive Jayaram Bhat (pictured). And Fremont, Calif.-based Zenprise has seen its revenues grow accordingly, reporting a 175 percent increase during the first three months of 2010 compared to the same period last year.
Zenprise said it now has more than 300 customers, including Boeing, Comcast, and Vodafone.
Venture capitalists are looking to jump on this trend too, Bhat said, which is why they are approached Zenprise, even though the company wasn’t planning to raise more money at the time. The new funding was led by Rembrandt Venture Partners, with participation from Ignition Partners, Bay Partners, Mayfield and Shasta Ventures, who all provided the company’s $10 million round last year.
Zenprise faces competition on two fronts — from existing systems management tools like IBM Tivoli and HP OpenView, which are expanding into smartphones, and from new startups focused in this area. For example, venture firm Sequoia Capital has backed a company called MobileIron. But Zenprise offers the broadest range of services, Bhat said, including service/performance management, device management, security, and expense management.
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