John M. Jack

Andreessen Horowitz this morning announced another big funding deal – $30 million for San Jose cloud-security provider CipherCloud – but I was more interested in the fine print: As part of the investment, John M. Jack, an Andreessen Horowitz board partner, will join CipherCloud’s board of directors.

First off, I wondered, what’s a board partner? And did I miss the announcement that Andreessen Horwitz had added yet another high-level investor?

The simple answer to the first question is, “They sit on boards!” quipped Andreessen communications maven Margit Wennmachers, who’s known Jack for years. Jack himself – who goes by “JJ” – told me that his role is akin to that of a part-time venture partner and includes sourcing and vetting investment opportunities, especially in the security space. John M. Jack

The former CEO of Fortify Software, which HP acquired in 2010 for an estimated $265 million, praised CipherCloud’s approach to protecting users of cloud-delivered software. “They essentially put a gateway between users and the cloud providers themselves,” Jack said, “and the data going into the gate that needs to be protected is encrypted. We’re talking billions and billions and billions of dollars in terms of market opportunity.”

As for whether I missed the announcement – there wasn’t one. Jack said he quietly joined up with Andreessen Horowitz about three months ago. “It’s kind of a perfect opportunity for me,” he said of his new gig. “It allows me some of the flexibility I like, but at the same time, I get to work with a great VC firm.”

This being Silicon Valley, of course, CipherCloud is hardly the only startup announcing funding today: Campbell-based Centric Software, which serves the retail, apparel and luxury goods industries, has closed on a $19 million financing. The series C round was led by Palo Alto’s Oak Investment Partners and Masthead Venture Partners of Cambridge, Mass.

And in case you missed it, Poshmark – a Menlo Park mobile marketplace that lets users buy and sell secondhand fashions – on Tuesday trumpeted a $12 million Series B round led by Menlo Ventures. The same day, Palo Alto’s ScaleIO came out of stealth mode with a $12 million funding of its own, led by Norwest Venture Partners and the Israeli outpost of Greylock Partners.

 

Peter Delevett Peter Delevett (184 Posts)

Peter Delevett covers startups and venture capital for the San Jose Mercury News. He's been a journalist in Silicon Valley since the dot-com daze.