Delta invests €350k in cloud player Digital Mines

25 Mar 2011

Venture capital firm Delta Partners has made the first investment from the Bank of Ireland Start-up and Emerging Sectors Equity Fund in cloud firm Digital Mines.

Digital Mines has received €350,000 in investment, bringing total investment so far in the company to €750,000, including direct investment from Enterprise Ireland and the company’s existing shareholder.

This represents the first investment from the €17m fund which was launched in December last year and is managed by Delta Partners on behalf of Bank of Ireland and Enterprise Ireland.

Digital Mines was founded in 2010 by entrepreneur Ed Byrne, who has extensive experience in the IT sector. The company, which has offices in Dublin and Krakow, is focused on the European market and has built an infrastructure-as-a-service product for the business market. Prior to this, Byrne was general manager of Hosting 365, which was sold last year to SunGard AS.

Digital Mines has developed a simple and intuitive service which will enable customers to deploy, configure and manage a cloud computing environment.

The company provides access to cloud computing resources on a pay-as-you-go model, which allows customers to manage their infrastructure and view their balances in real-time.

Byrne said cloud computing is the future of the IT industry, but most business owners struggle to take advantage of it because they do not have the technical expertise in their company.

“Our service simplifies the whole process to the point where our customers literally have the power at their fingers to manage their hardware and access their billing. Despite its size, the European Union is a relatively untapped market due to the range of languages, currencies and legal systems in the market.

“In response, we have developed a tailored European solution with local pricing and compliant solutions to business users, ensuring that their services are deployed and remain in Europe. This investment will ultimately realise our ambition in becoming a major player in the cloud space in Europe.”

The investment

“This investment will help Digital Mines to exploit the shift to cloud computing as companies look to reduce the costs of setting up and managing their IT infrastructure,” said Shay Garvey, general partner, Delta Partners.

“We believe Ed Byrne typifies the new breed of entrepreneurs and displays the ambition and the skills required to build the next generation of Irish technology companies that can achieve strong positions in overseas markets. We look forward to supporting Ed and his team.”

Donal Duffy, head of Enterprise Ireland Relations at Bank of Ireland, explained that the Bank of Ireland Start-up and Emerging Sectors Equity Fund is geared to support entrepreneurial companies that turn ideas into new products and services for domestic and export markets.

“Digital Mines is a true example of how, in the current economic climate, a €350,000 investment can support a high-potential export-oriented company grow, which is both critical for the company and to supporting Ireland’s economic recovery and growth.”

The fund

Des Doyle, Enterprise Ireland’s manager in charge of growth capital, said the new Bank of Ireland Start Up and Emerging Sectors Equity Fund is one of four new funds set up by Enterprise Ireland in association with the banks and other partners to provide critical start-up funding for new high-potential business in Ireland.

“These four funds now have a total of €124m available for investment in high-potential Irish companies. Digital Mines is a typical example of the new, innovative businesses that these funds have been set up to support,” Doyle added.

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years