BTI Raises Cash, Embraces SDN
Optical and Carrier Ethernet transport systems vendor BTI Systems Inc. has raised US$10 million in fresh funding from its venture capital backers and announced a software-defined networking (SDN)-ready product designed for inter-data center connectivity.
The new round of funding was led by Bain Capital, with contributions from other existing investors BDC, Covington Capital and GrowthWorks. The company has now raised around $90 million in venture backing.
The new money will help BTI as it continues to ramp up sales and push its new "SDN-enabled" platform, called Intelligent Cloud Connect. The vendor says Intelligent Cloud Connect is a packet/optical platform with integrated applications modules and open APIs, a design that "will replace the need to continue to purchase separate optical transport devices, switches, router ports, and network application appliances to handle and manage inter-data center traffic growth."
BTI expects to have the new product in customer labs in the second quarter of this year and ready for commercial availability in the third quarter. For more details, see this press release.
Why this matters
The move is noteworthy not just because it's another company with an SDN story but because BTI has a reputation for delivering on its technical promises -- it's not a name that crops up in the "slideware club."
And what's interesting about its approach is that BTI positioned itself as a company that can be included in SDN infrastructure plans, rather than a company that is developing specific SDN products (such as an OpenFlow controller). It has also targeted a specific market -- data center interconnection.
This ties in neatly with the data transport strategies of companies such as Google, which is already benefiting from simplified SDN-based networks and which is believed to be one of BTI's 350-plus customers. (See Is Google Fueling BTI's Growth? and Google: SDN Works for Us.)
The new funding from Bain and others also shows confidence in BTI's business model and growth potential, both worthy attributes in a market where many are struggling under sector-specific and macro-economic financial pressures.
— Ray Le Maistre, International Managing Editor, Light Reading