StrikeIron did not have to look very far to find a venture capital partner that would lead its “A” round.

The Aurora Funds, which helped the web services company get started in 2003 with early money, provided the $2.6 million round that StrikeIron announced on Tuesday. The deal had been expected to close for several weeks.

Richard Holcomb, one of StrikeIron’s three founders, is also a venture partner at Aurora. He told Local tech Wire in June that the closing would take place within a matter of weeks.

Aurora has backed StrikeIron from the start, given the potential of the web service’s market plus Holcomb’s record as an entrepreneur in the Triangle, including two software ventures. Holcomb also has served on company boards and has long been active in the RTP tech community.

“StrikeIron’s innovative solution and strong leadership skills represent all the right ingredients for taking advantage of one of the hottest growth markets in technology today,” said Scott Albert, managing general partner of Aurora, in a statement.

StrikeIron cited data from analyst firm IDC that forecasts web services as a $21 billion market by 2007.

The company went live on June 25 with its Web Services Business Network. The funds will be used to expand the product suite plus sales and marketing.

“This funding gives us the opportunity to focus on further expansion of our Web Services Business Network,” Holcomb said. “With its ease of use, publishing and management capabilities, WSBizNet will create greater opportunities for a broader market to take advantage of web services.”

Aurora names CFO

Also on Tuesday, Aurora named Mike Gorman as its chief financial officer. Gorman has more than 20 years of experience in finance, including six years with Ernst & Young in Raleigh and Cleveland, OH.

“Mike’s financial credentials and solid business background will enable him to make immediate contributions to The Aurora Funds’ team and our portfolio companies,” Albert said. “He is well respected in the local community, with a proven track record of improving the operations and financial performance of the companies in which he has been involved.”

Gorman has worked with Global Knowledge Network, Inc., Accton Americas Management Group, AFAC, SunTechnologies Group, Inc., and Datalogic Optic Electronics Inc.


Aurora Funds: