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Violin Reportedly Files to IPO

Violin has raised at least $172 million in venture backing

Violin Memory, the high-speed flash memory array maker, quietly filed its papers with the SEC last month to go public according to Bloomberg, which was quoting "two people familiar with the matter."

It puts Violin's possible valuation at near $2 billion. At least that's what Violin's apparently negotiating for.

It's all kinda hush-hush because Violin, like Workday, which IPO'd brilliantly last week, is making use of the recently enacted Jumpstart Our Business Startups (JOBS) Act that lets wannabe public companies keep their plans and financials secret until three weeks before their roadshow - hence no prospectus.

To qualify under the JOBS Act companies have to have annual revenues of less than a billion dollars. Violin is understood to have sales of about $100 million.

Violin has raised at least $172 million in venture backing and when it took in a massive $80 million D round earlier this year the seven-year-old concern was reportedly valued at over $800 million.

JPMorgan Chase, Bank of America and Deutsche Bank are supposed to take Violin out.

Violin's customers include Cisco, Oracle and VMware. It is led by Don Basile, the former CEO of flash memory house Fusion-io, which went public last year and has done quite well.

Violin's backers include SAP Ventures Toshiba, Highland Capital Partners and GE Capital Management. It's going to have to face competition from IBM, which is buying Texas Memory Systems, and EMC, which bought Israeli start-up XtremIO for $430 million before it put out a product.

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Maureen O'Gara the most read technology reporter for the past 20 years, is the Cloud Computing and Virtualization News Desk editor of SYS-CON Media. She is the publisher of famous "Billygrams" and the editor-in-chief of "Client/Server News" for more than a decade. One of the most respected technology reporters in the business, Maureen can be reached by email at maureen(at)sys-con.com or paperboy(at)g2news.com, and by phone at 516 759-7025. Twitter: @MaureenOGara

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