SwiftStack Exits Stealth With Open Source Swift Software-Defined Storage


SwiftStack, a startup developer of software-defined storage technology, this week came out of stealth mode on the news that it has raised $6.1 million in its Series A funding.

That round of funding includes money from a strategic investor, UMC Capital, the investment arm of Taiwan-based semiconductor foundry UMC.

SwiftStack was founded in 2011 by a team of developers with experience in the web infrastructure business, including some Yahoo veterans, said Joe Arnold, CEO of the San Francisco-based company.

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SwiftStack is developing software-defined storage for object storage in order to make it easy for customers in the web, mobile and SaaS (Software-as-a-Service) markets with a heavy mobile focus to run a public storage cloud inside their own data centers, Arnold said.

With Swift, the actual object store is decoupled from the management, allowing customers to use commodity storage systems and to scale out their storage infrastructures similar to how Amazon S3 does for public clouds, he said.

"Our target market is primarily SaaS applications, which are eating up the world," he said. "As customers build services, they need to scale to handle the ability to serve software to customers. They're supporting a lot of customers, each with a lot of users. So the app needs to handle a lot of concurrency with mobile and web apps."

Because of its software focus, SwiftStack is looking to recruit channel partners working with commodity storage to help their customers build public clouds based on OpenStack Swift, Arnold said. The company's solution is slated to be released in April.

SwiftStack is the core contributor to the OpenStack Swift open source project for developing a highly available, distributed object store, he said. The company offers a complete Swift-based solution as well.

SwiftStack was the second startup in the past few weeks to unveil plans to develop software-defined storage technology. Jeda Networks late last month introduced its new overlay technology for software-defined networks it said brings networked storage to converged infrastructures without the need for Ethernet switches.

PUBLISHED MARCH 14, 2013