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Intel Capital Contributes To Mirantis £10m Funding Round

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Mirantis has received $10m in venture capital funding, intended to boost its presence in the OpenStack market

Mirantis, a systems integrator focused on open cloud solutions, particularly OpenStack, has announced that it closed $10 million (£6.2m) in growth capital financing from Dell Ventures, Intel Capital and WestSummit Capital.

Mirantis officials said the investment will be used to accelerate Mirantis’ growth in the OpenStack market. The privately held company was previously financed through sales revenues.

Vendor-neutral

As Mirantis increases its presence in the OpenStack market, it will remain true to its focus of providing a vendor-neutral implementation of OpenStack, free of lock-in hooks or proprietary packaging, the company said.

“This funding signifies the fact that OpenStack is entering a realm where it is being considered a real force in the future cloud computing technology landscape,” Alex Freedland, co-founder and chairman of Mirantis, told eWEEK. “There has been significant hype around OpenStack in the last 12 months, but all investment funds behind OpenStack to-date are bets that OpenStack will make it. This funding is the first growth capital round based on the evidence that OpenStack is getting significant traction in the industry and a further validation that Mirantis has been able to significantly influence the commercial adoption of OpenStack.”

Cloud computing © alexmillos Shutterstock 2012Moreover, Freedland said, “We will use the money to further strengthen our products that are designed to further simplify the adoption of OpenStack by the industry, as well as to dramatically expand our sales and marketing channels.”

Combining its delivery model with the intellectual property that makes building a vendor-agnostic OpenStack cloud simple and predictable, Mirantis is striving to accelerate the adoption of OpenStack clouds by service providers, Software as a Service (SaaS) vendors, and enterprises.

OpenStack is a global collaboration of developers and cloud computing technologists producing a ubiquitous open source cloud computing platform for public and private clouds. The project aims to deliver solutions for all types of clouds by being simple to implement, massively scalable, and feature-rich.

Global reach

The technology consists of a series of interrelated projects delivering various components for a cloud infrastructure solution. Founded by Rackspace Hosting and NASA, OpenStack has grown to be a global software community of developers collaborating on a standard and massively scalable open source cloud operating system.

Mirantis was an early OpenStack advocate, since the open source project was introduced in 2010 and recently joined Dell and Intel as founding members of the OpenStack Foundation.

Boris Renski, Mirantis co-founder and executive vice president, was elected to the board of the Foundation, which provides leadership to the community and guidance over development efforts.

“We believe that OpenStack is on its way to becoming a universal control plane for the entire application infrastructure fabric,” said Adrian Ionel, president and chief executive of Mirantis, in a statement. “This phenomenon is transforming the industry. To help accelerate this transformation in a meaningful way, we need strong strategic investors like Dell Ventures, Intel Capital, and WestSummit Capital. We consciously picked investors who aligned with us on vision and our commitment to accelerate OpenStack adoption around the world.”

Renski said Mirantis has the largest pool of engineering expertise in OpenStack in the market today, and helps service providers, SaaS vendors, and enterprises build and run OpenStack cloud infrastructure.

Expertise

The company has provided this expertise to customers in more than 30 OpenStack deployment projects over the past 18 months. Indeed, Mirantis has helped many early adopters of the OpenStack platform successfully launch production-grade clouds. Customers include organisations such as NASA, WebEx, Gap, PayPal, Internap, and AT&T.

“Mirantis is a true example of the power of OpenStack technology,” said Lisa Lambert, vice president of Intel Capital and managing director of the software and services sector, in a statement. “In just a short amount of time, Mirantis has established itself as a key OpenStack systems integrator by helping numerous early adopters realise the value of the open source cloud movement. Intel Capital looks forward to working with its team as it continues to expand its global footprint.”

OpenStack has been catching on all over the world, Mirantis officials said. The open cloud platform is popular in Europe and also in Asia. “We see tremendous demand for OpenStack in the APAC market and China in particular, said Elise Huang, partner at WestSummit Capital, in a statement. “Beijing generates more traffic to the OpenStack.org website than any other city in the world today, and China hosts some of the largest cloud deployments in the world. With our investment, we aim to help Mirantis establish a stronghold in the APAC market.”

Dell said OpenStack is a central component of its own cloud strategy.

“This investment reflects our company’s commitment to open source platforms that give our customers more options and flexibility,” said Nnamdi Orakwue, vice president of Dell Cloud, in a statement. “We recently announced OpenStack as our open source cloud platform of choice for public and private clouds. The partnership with Mirantis demonstrates our commitment to the community and our goal of becoming a leading contributor to OpenStack. Dell continues to make strategic investments that enhance our portfolio and customer value.”

Renski said Mirantis has dedicated developers contributing to OpenStack Quantum LBaaS Load Balancer as a Service and helps run the Bay Area OpenStack user group in Silicon Valley. The company also offers a training programme to expand the pool of skilled engineering talent and expertise in OpenStack.

In addition, Mirantis’ ongoing ‘Boot Camps’ have become very popular and are usually sold out, he said. Dell and Intel are active participants in the OpenStack community.

WestSummit

WestSummit Capital is a China-based global growth stage technology investment firm that invests in industry-leading technology companies with a substantial presence or strategic interest in China.

“The constitution of the round is also very important,” Freedland told eWEEK. “The round is lead by Intel Capital which is widely recognised as an independent force in the infrastructure space. Intel is known to partner with every meaningful infrastructure provider and with them in the lead we can ensure that we can work with all vendors and yet stay agnostic and open. Dell is an important partner who has embraced OpenStack early, and through this relationship we will continue to deliver robust OpenStack solutions to customers worldwide. Last but not least, WestSummit is the leading China-based venture capital firm that will be a strong partner in our expansion into Asia, a must for a company with global aspirations.”

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Originally published on eWeek.