Service Provider Cloud

Viptela founders launch multicloud management startup with $25M in funding

The founders of SD-WAN vendor Viptela are launching a new startup called Prosimo, an "Application Experience Infrastructure company," backed by $25 million in venture capital funding.

The series A funding is co-led by General Catalyst and WRVI Capital, in addition to private investors. Dr. Steve Herrod, managing director at General Catalyst, and Lip-Bu Tan, managing partner at WRVI Capital, have also joined Prosimo's board. Prosimo co-founders CEO Ramesh Prabagaran and CTO Nehal Bhau were part of the founding team at Viptela, and later worked on product development and engineering for Viptela after its acquisition by Cisco.

Prosimo is also unveiling its Application eXperience Infrastructure (AXI) platform that the company says provides a vertically integrated infrastructure stack to securely deliver enterprise applications in multicloud environments. The AXI service connects to public cloud providers, including AWS, Azure and the Google Cloud Platform. Customers can access their business applications housed in public clouds or data centers via a number of AXI Edges, which are "Prosimo data enforcers and sensors distributed across the globe."

AXI addresses several challenges enterprises face in cloud application delivery, including managing operating costs, meeting application SLAs and "fragmented security." Prabagaran adds that Prosimo AXI also has machine learning capabilities stemming from the Application-driven Intelligent Results engine (AIR).

There are two components to "solving the application experience problem," says Prabagaran – the first is both improving how applications communicate and improving how users access the applications. The second piece of the puzzle is bringing together "elements of security, networking, application performance, observability, cloud, etc." in one infrastructure stack to simplify the way IT teams manage access to business applications, adds Prabagaran.

In terms of security, Prosimo provides user and application-focused security via zero trust access with an identity-aware proxy. It also partners with third-party security vendors. Prosimo claims to meet application SLAs with up to 90% improvement in page load time.

The startup's current customers include Fortune 500 companies and Tier 1 service providers. The company competes with cloud security, CDN, multicloud networking and traditional networking vendors such as Zscaler, F5, Cloudflare and Akamai.

Brad Casemore, research VP for Datacenter Networks at IDC, says the networking market focused on improving application experience for multicloud environments is becoming increasingly competitive since the pandemic accelerated the enterprise sector's move to multiclouds. In addition, Casemore says enterprises are becoming more focused on how network management technologies and support for cloud applications can assist them in achieving specific business outcomes – such as meeting application SLAs, mitigating threats, reducing opex costs and increasing automation.

"Now we're moving to a situation where increasingly, and it's not true for all enterprises, but … every spending decision, including those related to procurement and implementation of underlying infrastructure, is seen through the lens of business outcomes," says Casemore. "This is where you have to be able to have a value proposition that speaks to that new buying constituency."

Major networking companies are increasingly focusing on simplifying access to business applications by mimicking the cloud provider's operational model. Casemore says this can be achieved in part by reducing manual operations and using "declarative management, extensive and intelligent automation."

"Those cloud principles are coming down to a lot of enterprises and we're looking at the application as the unitary measure of business as we become more digital," Casemore adds.

— Kelsey Kusterer Ziser, Senior Editor, Light Reading

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