2021-07-27

A new era of more accessible and manageable Kubernetes is about to begin

Stripes, T-Mobile Ventures and Alter Venture join our team and vision of building the best Kubernetes management platform out there, with $20M in Series A funding

The need for organizations across all verticals to operationalize how they develop and deploy applications is more obvious than ever before. The last 18 months have businesses re-thinking and focusing on core values, accelerated that trend, also underpinning the significance of attributes such as security, transparency and reliability – beyond speed.

Since its first release 7 years ago, Kubernetes has been exponentially fueling this transformation, to rapidly become the undisputed virtual infrastructure building block for application teams to confidently and easily test and deploy code across different environments. However, while Kubernetes made application lifecycle management easier, but itself, remains hard to deploy, manage and operate. For most organizations it has been a journey of experimentation, to early productization and for many, they have recently started to think about what it would take to run production-grade container deployments and Kubernetes clusters, at scale.

Admittedly, it has also been a journey for the industry and technology vendors. From a collection of script tools to support Kubernetes DIY projects, to “opinionated stacks” and clouds offering different flavors of the technology, each with specific feature sets and requirements, to solutions based on declarative management that define the model and let the platform take care of the lifecycle, similar to how Kubernetes manages container applications.

We have definitely come a long way since 2014, but we are really only at the beginning of the next phase of Kubernetes adoption with exciting times ahead!

A new era of Kubernetes maturity

As Kubernetes becomes critical business infrastructure, two themes become apparent. First, although Kubernetes is such as powerful community project with extremely wide scope (reflected by myriads of add-ons and use cases), the reality is that organizations are challenged to navigate a complex ecosystem of more than 1600 integrations and align them with their unique requirements, especially when scaling production environments is taken into account. And the lack of Kubernetes-specific talent in the market is definitely not helping. Second, with more and more separate internal teams adopting container-based development, many organizations now need to manage multiple, diverse, new and existing Kubernetes clusters potentially in different environments (in the cloud, their own data centers and the edge).

The need to be able to simplify across all environments without missing out on the flexibility and user-specific usability for each one, irrespective of the type, flavor, scale or location, is becoming more prominent than ever for technology leaders. How can teams manage all these Kubernetes clusters from a single control point, with visibility, governance, security and cost control, is now becoming an obstacle to accelerate innovation.

That’s exactly where Spectro Cloud’s vision comes in and today we’re thrilled to announce that we are ramping up our momentum in building the best enterprise-grade Kubernetes management solution in the market with the validation stemming from our recent $20M Series A funding round.

We are excited to welcome our new investors

The round was led by Ken Fox, Managing Partner at Stripes, with participation from our existing investors, Sierra Ventures, Boldstart Ventures, WestWave Capital and Firebolt Ventures. Additional investors in this round include T-Mobile Ventures and Alter Venture Partners.

We're extremely fortunate to have the best minds in the enterprise software world - the same people that made Monday.com and Snyk the success stories they are today - join our journey as we set sight on alleviating the pain for organizations when scaling their Kubernetes operations.

It is a great proof-point and acknowledgement that the technology market is starting to recognize the importance of making Kubernetes accessible and manageable, whether in simple or complex environments.

types of clusters
Delivering value and simplifying across any type of environment

Unleashing the potential of the open source community with enterprise-grade curation

The last 18 months we have been maniacally focused on bringing on core features to our platform and making it truly enterprise-ready, continuing our work with our customers and design partners. Our goal has always been to enable organizations with a single, flexible platform to easily manage any Kubernetes environment, new or existing, on any location, always optimizing for minimum effort. We want to be the “vCenter” -like environment for Kubernetes and container workloads, but a lot more flexible and extensible for multi-cluster and multi-environment support.

The key to any environment being able to scale effortlessly and without risking consistency is repeatability. With the Spectro Cloud platform, repeatability is a foundational concept. Teams can model their Kubernetes stacks based on the development needs of each project based on blueprints - we call them Cluster Profiles - and then use them as a single source of truth to drive deployment, update and run-time resilience, all without having to waste time with complex scripts. This declarative, desire state-driven approach makes multi-cluster Kubernetes management an easy task, unlike some existing solutions that are fire-and-forget, having to deal with one cluster at a time.

Behind the scenes, our powerful orchestration engine, Palette, leverages a popular open source project called Cluster-API to manage Kubernetes clusters. This means that our platform benefits from rich community support and an ecosystem with robust multi-cloud integrations, without having to reinvent the wheel.

cluster api diagram
Our Palette orchestration uniquely leverages Cluster API to deploy and manage clusters consistently anywhere

In addition, it has allowed us to spend more time and engineering effort on end-to-end enterprise-grade value-add features to deliver automation (our Terraform adapter is the #1 downloaded provider), extensibility, governance, security, advanced day 2 operation capabilities, and more. This is exactly what our customers have been asking: instead of worrying about being locked into a startup’s proprietary technology, they can leverage the latest and greatest open source technologies, but have a well-polished, easy-to-use enterprise-grade Kubernetes management platform.

What’s next

It’s become fashionable as of late to say that every business software startup is now a consumer software startup. And as software continues to eat the world, the users of enterprise software are not only IT teams, but developers as well.

For Spectro Cloud, development teams and their needs are a big part of our design process, both in terms of functionality, but also in terms of user experience. In the next few months we will be releasing some new awesome features for both IT Operations and dev teams, aiming to optimize the way all users collaborate to deploy applications faster and easier, always simplifying - irrespective of location or number of clusters.

There are many cool things Saad, Gautam, and I, along with the rest of the Spectro Cloud team want to do, and we’ve just scratched the surface, so stay tuned. Until then, and as our team grows, we have some new exciting positions here at Spectro Cloud, so if you are passionate, authentic, product-focused and motivated, check out our jobs page and reach out to us at jobs@spectrocloud.com.

— Tenry Fu, CEO & Co-Founder

Read the blog by Stripes
Read the blog by Alter Venture