Let’s face it – the technologies that constitute the plumbing underpinning what we do online are boring – but they’re also critical. They may not get the attention of an event like TechCrunch disrupt, they may not tick the boxes of “social”, “mobile” or “local” but they allow our world to function, and perhaps that is more important than the latest app to allow filters to be used with little square pictures. Case in point Mimecast, a company that delivers cloud-based email management for Microsoft Exchange. The services Mimecast delivers include archiving, continuity and security. While being almost entirely invisible, Mimecast has grown to the point where it has more than 6,000 customers worldwide and has offices in Europe, North America, Africa and the Channel Islands.

Luckily (for Mimecast at least) there are people out there who don’t get swayed by the sex-appeal of a product and look at what really matters – the real value a solution delivers. To this point Mimecast are announcing today that they’ve picked up a massive $62M Series C round. According to the company:

Mimecast intends to use the investment to drive innovations in corporate email. The company’s technology has already played an instrumental role in changing the way businesses deploy email; leading the transition from fragmented LAN-based infrastructures to a single platform cloud solution, Unified Email Management (UEM). Mimecast will now focus on continuing this evolution, using its Software-as-a-Service technology to create an Information Banking platform that allows businesses to unlock the inherent value stored within corporate email.

Mimecast as a product is in the same space as Postini (acquired by Google) and also products from Symantec and McAffee (Symantec.Cloud and MX Logic respectively) – it’s an important space as the sheer quantity of email ramps up, and the compliance requirements on originations become ever more stringent. In his comment on the funding, cEo Peter Bauer perhaps indicated where the company will move as pure email archiving become more connected across social and collaboration products:

Today’s businesses are as dependent on email as ever but, increasingly, email struggles to keep up as the way we create, store and share information changes… we believe email needs to be rewired if it is to continue to deliver real value to businesses…. we are working to make email more collaborative and more interactive to realise the true value of the vast amount of unstructured data in email stores. We believe that the future is a more interactive archiving model, where IT folk and end users alike can derive more value in real time, on a day-to-day basis on any technology platform they choose to use.

More than simply tagging the words collaboration and interaction on to a boring product however, this message speaks to an interesting new direction for archiving products – and $62M buys a fair bit of development in that direction. Watch this space.

Ben Kepes

Ben Kepes is a technology evangelist, an investor, a commentator and a business adviser. Ben covers the convergence of technology, mobile, ubiquity and agility, all enabled by the Cloud. His areas of interest extend to enterprise software, software integration, financial/accounting software, platforms and infrastructure as well as articulating technology simply for everyday users.

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