August 14, 2015
There is no shortage of startups promising to help organizations transition to software-defined networking, but most focus mainly on the logistics of separating transport capacity from the underlying infrastructure. The exception is RIFT.io Inc., which is launching out of stealth with $16 million in funding to simplify the implementation of the management services running above that abstraction.
Truly virtual networks are made up of discrete functions that can be provisioned and managed independently, not only from one another but the hardware on which they run as well. That helps simplify management and allows the operator to make much more efficient use of their infrastructure, allocating each service only the precise amount of resources required to meet demand at any given time.
That’s a lot more cost-efficient than the traditional approach of implementing each function in a dedicated appliance that can’t scale beyond the capacity in its chassis. but the increased flexibility comes at the cost of more complexity. Operators often need to build and deploy the functions that make up their environments from scratch, which is where RIFT.io comes in.
The startup claims that its namesake platform makes it possible to create network services in weeks rather than months and deploy the functionality across multiple types of environments without necessitating the significant architectural changes needed for manual porting. RIFT.ware supports several different ways of implementing that functionality as well, which means customers are not locked into any one operating model.
The prospect of removing vendor lock-in always strikes a chord with enterprise buyers, but it’s made especially appealing when it comes to software-defined environments, which incorporate a wide range of different technologies by their very nature. RIFT.io is not simply stopping at merely accommodating that diversity, however. Its platform also promises to enable the seamless scalability to take advantage of it.
That pitch has already won over its investors. Chief among them is North Bridge Venture Partners, notable for its investments in the like of Disqus Inc. and Quora Inc., which led the new $16 million round. The funds will go towards accelerating the development of the Rift.ware platform and speeding along adoption through increased marketing efforts.