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CloudFlare CEO Matthew PrinceWeb performance and security startup CloudFlare announced today it has raised $20 million in new funding led by New Enterprise Associates. The company intends to use the money to hire more employees and tackle new infrastructure projects.

“Every day thousands of websites sign up for CloudFlare and we’ve done a lot on modest resources,” CloudFlare CEO and co-founder Matthew Prince told VentureBeat. “We’ve now built a foundation that’s helping us scale up and look forward to helping even bigger clients.”

CloudFlare’s purpose is to help speed up and protect websites, a universal need for all kinds of businesses. That universal need and the fact that CloudFlare gives away some of its services for free have helped the company grow immensely since its launch in September 2010.

“Users love this service,” Prince said. “We’re really focused on delivering a product anyone can use and just making the Internet work better.”

We reported in June that CloudFlare added seven new data centers to make up a total of 12 data centers around the world. The company needs this kind of capacity because the sites it protects reach more than 7 billion page views a month. To put it in more simple terms, more than 10 percent of Internet users around the world visited sites supported by CloudFlare in the last month.

CloudFlare’s service is available for free with basic features or $20 per month with advanced features and controls. Prince said the company intends to launch a plan targeting mid-sized business in the third quarter, and even larger enterprises will see custom plans offered in late 2011.

San Francisco-based CloudFlare previously raised $2.05 million in funding, so the $20 million jump is a big move that suggests a hot future for the company.

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