Alphabet, Cisco Join $30M Skyport Security Funding Round

The startup develops hardened servers designed to be both secure and easy to deploy.

Mitch Wagner, Executive Editor, Light Reading

March 15, 2016

2 Min Read
Alphabet, Cisco Join $30M Skyport Security Funding Round

Skyport Systems, which provides hardened servers designed to be both secure and easy to deploy, has scored a $30 million funding round from GV -- formerly known as Google Ventures -- Cisco Investments and other companies, Skyport said Tuesday.

Skyport Systems plans to use the funding to expand sales and marketing and accelerate R&D. The round was led by GV, a subsidiary of Alphabet Inc. , which is Google (Nasdaq: GOOG)'s parent company. Other participants were Cisco Investments, Thomvest Ventures, Northgate Capital and InstantScale, as well as existing investors Index Ventures, Sutter Hill Ventures and Intel Capital. The Series C round brings Skyport's total war chest to $67 million.

Skyport's team is composed of founding engineers from Cisco Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: CSCO) and Juniper Networks Inc. (NYSE: JNPR). Its security technology is "based on a zero-trust approach that assumes all networks are continually breached," GV General Partner Dave Munichiello said in a Skyport statement.

Skyport came out of stealth mode in May, with a secure server that carriers can use to deploy managed services to customers as well as support their own OSS/BSS systems. The company promises easy deployment for its SkySecure servers, running security-enhanced Linux on Intel's trusted execution technology, built using a secure supply chain providing secure hardware elements and a server that tests and evaluates itself every time it boots up. (See Skyport Touts Ultra-Secure Carrier Server .)

It's been a busy year for investments in Silicon Valley networking startups, with significant spending involving GV and Cisco. Plexxi announced an undisclosed funding amount from GV. Cumulus Networks picked up $35 million in Series C funding from a half-dozen vendors. (See Two SDN Startups Join 2016 Funding Parade.)

Big Switch Networks raked in $48.5 million during a Series C funding round. (See SDN Startup Big Switch Lands $48.5M Funding.)

And VeloCloud Networks Inc. filled its coffers to the tune of $27 million in Series C funding from backers including Cisco. (See Cisco Joins $27M Round for SD-WAN Startup VeloCloud.)

Learn more about security at our upcoming Big Communications Event in Austin, TX, May 24-25. Register now!

Security is key to Cisco's transition from equipment vendor to full-service business technology partner to its customers. (See Cisco Upgrades SDN Security, Flexibility.)

The networking giant bought security vendor Lancope in late 2015 for $452 million, following the acquisitions of a string of other security companies, including OpenDNS, Portcullis and Neohapsis.

Light Reading recently tested Cisco's security products and found they maintained performance while guarding networks. (See Cisco Hits Prime Targets With Virtualized Security .)

— Mitch Wagner, Follow me on TwitterVisit my LinkedIn profile, West Coast Bureau Chief, Light Reading.

About the Author(s)

Mitch Wagner

Executive Editor, Light Reading

San Diego-based Mitch Wagner is many things. As well as being "our guy" on the West Coast (of the US, not Scotland, or anywhere else with indifferent meteorological conditions), he's a husband (to his wife), dissatisfied Democrat, American (so he could be President some day), nonobservant Jew, and science fiction fan. Not necessarily in that order.

He's also one half of a special duo, along with Minnie, who is the co-habitor of the West Coast Bureau and Light Reading's primary chewer of sticks, though she is not the only one on the team who regularly munches on bark.

Wagner, whose previous positions include Editor-in-Chief at Internet Evolution and Executive Editor at InformationWeek, will be responsible for tracking and reporting on developments in Silicon Valley and other US West Coast hotspots of communications technology innovation.

Beats: Software-defined networking (SDN), network functions virtualization (NFV), IP networking, and colored foods (such as 'green rice').

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