SDN specialist Big Switch wins $48.5M funding

Santa Clara based software defined networking vendor Big Switch Networks (BSN) has won another $48.5 million to bring its bare metal networking fabrics to new markets.

The networking specialist, which has now received $93.5m since its launch in 2010, aims to use the new cash injection to fund more R&D and to create news sales and marketing channels in the Europe, Asia Pacific, the UAE and the US.

Investors from Morgenthaler Ventures, Silver Lake Waterman, Index Ventures, Khosla Ventures, Redpoint Ventures, Accton, CID Group and MSD Capital put the cash up after hearing how the company achieved 300% growth last year. Its two technology inventions have found three popular use cases among telecoms carriers, data centre companies, service providers and enterprises.

BSN offers clients a Big Monitoring Fabric and a Big Cloud Fabric, both of which are based on bare metal software defined networking principles, with a centralised product-specific controller managing a network of bare-metal Ethernet switches. The controller, the managed switches, and the links connecting to them form the network fabric. BSN defines the software for a centralised controller running on industry standard servers and the operating system that runs on the bare-metal Ethernet switches. The Big Monitoring Fabric, which connects networks with monitoring tools and Big Cloud Fabric, which provides software defined management of switching fabrics in data centres, have won telco and data centre clients in the US, APAC and EMEA. Its main vertical markets are telcos and IT, financial services, government, service providers and higher education.

In addition to the extra funding, BSN announced that it has recruited former NetApp CEO Dan Warmenhoven and venture capitalist Gary Morgenthaler, who have both steered companies through the transition that comes with rapid expansion.

According to IHS Research, the percentage of users of software defined networking in enterprise communications will grow from 6% to 23% in 2016. It also estimates that spending on data centre networking will reach $13 billion in 2019, up from $781 million in 2014.

“Nobody can ignore the advantages of software defined networking,” said Shawn O’Neill, MD of one Big Switch’s venture partners Silver Lake Waterman.

Big Switch is fundamentally changing the economics of data centre networking and SDN, claimed  another investor, Mike Volpi, a partner at Index Ventures. “This financing will fuel significant go-to-market acceleration and geographic expansion,” said Volpi.

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