Packet, which provides bare metal compute power as a service, took another step forward today, announcing a $25 million Series B funding round. The round is being led by Third Point Ventures, a new investor, and includes other new investors such as Battery Ventures and Samsung NEXT, as well as existing investors SoftBank Corp. and Dell Technologies Capital.
The funding announcement came packaged with some technology news -- a 60-second install process -- that underscores Packet 's determination to play heavily at the edge cloud space and bring a new level of automation to distributed computing. This is all on the heels of adding new leadership in the form of new CTO Ihab Tarazi and new COO George Karidis, industry veterans in the telecom/data center and cloud spaces, respectively. (See Packet Carving New Niche at the Edge.)
Packet will use the money to expand from its current 18 global locations to 50, Tarazi says in an interview. He sees the presence of both new investors and existing players as a validation of Packet's business model.
"The fact that existing investors are chipping in with additional investment shows their commitment to the company and the fact that we have new investors and one of them is Samsung, which is very active in the edge and wireless business, is a validation of what we are doing," he says. "This investment is important for us to do two things: continue to invest in product development and expand into the edge, which is why we announced 50 edge locations as part of this funding.
Packet continues to add talent, landing Thao Nyugen as director of hardware platforms. Nyugen joined Packet from Facebook, where he led development and deployment of more than 1 million Open Compute Project (OCP) servers in the last eight years.
Nyugen has "a wealth of knowledge, understands data center architecture and has strong relationships [with those in the field] and this is helpful to us because we have to design the new data center stack for the edge, the edge needs to be automated and smaller," Tarazi says. "We want to use OCP and Open 19 to develop the new edge hardware and edge nodes."
Packet has also hired a new vice president for software development, Bruce Wang, Tarazi notes. Wang is leading the charge to get the company's interval for turning up its bare metal as-a-service from six minutes down to 60 seconds.
That's essential because it will get Packet "on par with the best of the industry," he says, and makes it possible for Packet to support more dynamic applications at the edge.
— Carol Wilson, Editor-at-Large, Light Reading