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SwiftStack, one of the lead contributors to the open-source Swift OpenStack storage project, this week announced that it has raised a new Series B $16 million round of funding. Total funding for SwiftStack now stands at $23.6 million.
Joe Arnold, CEO of SwiftStack told Datamation that the new funding will used to scale up sales and marketing efforts and to help build out the company's partner program.
"We're in the growth stage and hiring up to meet demand, we have revenue and customers running in production at scale," Arnold said. "Our customers include financial services, federal agencies as well as web and mobile companies like eBay."
From a funding perspective, Arnold said that the $16 million figure was what he figured was needed to help the company reach its next evolutionary milestone. He said the first round of funding was about establishing the company and the new round of funding is about taking the lessons learned to date, and scaling the company.
Arnold said that, to date, SwiftStack has gone to market with a smaller team and a solid product. Now the goal is to expand the sales and marketing efforts to bring the technology to more audiences.
"We're going after enterprise customers," Arnold said. "We have been able to make open-source software and commodity hardware consumable by the enterprise."
Arnold said that SwiftStack has built out software features that enterprises need like authentication gateway integration, chargeback and file system gateways so existing applications will work with Swift.
Another key challenge that SwiftStack has helped to solve is that of multiple data center storage requirements. So an enterprise can now more easily manage storage across multiple distributed data centers.
Driving the partner ecosystem is a key goal with the new funding in hand for SwiftStack.
"We can go to market less expensively than an appliance storage company because distribution is easier for us," Arnold said. "We're often going into environments where there isn't any OpenStack, and we're the first component that they are adopting."
Arnold said that SwiftStack has agreements with large services companies that supply hardware so they can sell and support SwiftStack. There is also a network of systems integrators that SwiftStack is partnered with.
From a competitive perspective, Arnold said that SwiftStack has a very specific focus. That focus is how to handle the massive wave of unstructured data that enterprises need to deal with.
"We have a unique product for Software Defined Storage and where we see competition is largely with incumbent vendors," Arnold said. "So we see a lot of Isilon, that's the replacement we're working against."
Sean Michael Kerner is a senior editor at Datamation and InternetNews.com. Follow him on Twitter @TechJournalist ##
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