CloudBees (previous CloudAve coverage), the Java based PaaS provider, yesterday announced an additional round of funding worth $10.5 Million. Regular readers of this blog know that I am bullish on the fact that PaaS is the future of Cloud Services and this funding news only confirms that investors also believe in this trend. CloudBees was started by two JBoss veterans with an aim to offer a versatile PaaS devoid of all the restrictions offered by traditional PaaS providers like Google App Engine, Heroku, etc.. CloudBees platform supports both Java EE and Spring developers. Its DEV@Cloud is the IDE as a service with Jenkins (Hudson) continuous integration support that ensures higher quality of code. The runtime is provided by RUN@Cloud which was beefed up by their Stax Networks acquisition. They boast some big customers like Cisco, Digg, etc..
The Series B round is led by Lightspeed Venture Partners along with Matrix Partners who lead their Series A round worth $4 Million. This additional funding will help CloudBees broaden their offering and focus on sales and marketing to meet the needs of the highly competitive PaaS space. John Vrionis, Managing Director at Lightspeed, will join the board that also includes David Skok from Matrix Partners, and Robert Bickel and Sacha Labourey from CloudBees.
When CloudBees started off 16 months ago, the PaaS space was slowly getting heated up with none of the big players had a clear PaaS strategy. CloudBees came out swinging as the only public PaaS player without any of the restrictions of the traditional PaaS environments. Soon, the idea of PaaS on premise gained ground with Cumulogic offering a Java PaaS solution for on-premise environments including private clouds. This was followed by VMware disrupting the entire PaaS space with their open source CloudFoundry offering which came out as a more versatile platform
- that could run both on-premise and in public cloud environments
- that could allow any application framework to be offered as PaaS
In short, CloudFoundry completely shook up the PaaS space adding considerable pressure on everyone from Azure to Heroku to CloudBees. In order to keep themselves relevant in the post CloudFoundry world, CloudBees changed their strategy by offering a private cloud deployment along with their public PaaS offering. This hybrid approach helped them push back on CloudFoundry which offered support for Java based only on Spring framework.
Even though I like what CloudBees and other PaaS players like Cumulogic are doing, they face a steep road ahead of them because of what CloudFoundry can do with VMware’s muscle. This round of funding will clearly help CloudBees gain some momentum and ward off some of the CloudFoundry competition. Another player in this mix, Cumulogic, has been lying low for now and it will also be interesting to see their strategy. Overall, Java PaaS segment is getting more and more interesting and the next two years will bring in some clarity on where it is headed.