Sana Security has scooped up $12 million in a fifth round of funding and hired telco crash survivor Don Listwin to take over the corner office.
Sana, which excels at behavior blocking software, is banking on the new CEO to find new customers for its Active Malware Defense Technology and figure out an exit strategy in a very tricky security market.
Listwin, a serial entrepreneur who was once he #2 man at Cisco, joins Sana from OpenWave, a company formed during the dot-com boom by the merger of Phone.com and Software.com. He managed the company through the telco crash when OpenWave stock price tanked and a subsequent revival that was driven by sharp dealmaking in the wireless sector.
Sana is hoping Listwin can weave his magic in a crowded sector dominated by the likes of Symantec, McAfee and a long list of aggressive anti-virus vendors.
Behavior blocking and heuristics are becoming critical components in anti-virus product suites, setting up Sana as a prime target for an acquisition.
It'll be interesting to watch this company throughout 2007 to see if it can score additional ISP deals (Earthlink and Cox Communications are current customers) or find new markets beyond the U.S.
The company has raised a total of $40 million from venture capital firms including Sevin Rosen Funds and El Dorado Ventures.