Amazon EC2 Creators Betting On Benguela

The Benguela Web site calls it a cloud infrastructure software company, but offers little insight into exactly what type of cloud infrastructure software Menlo Park, Calif.- and Cape Town, South Africa-based Benguela will offer, other than that it "will revolutionize how enterprises interact with the cloud." The company is funded by Sequoia Capital.

"Benguela is a stealth mode cloud computing company founded by former executives that initiated and led the development of Amazon's EC2 service," the Benguela Web site said. The company would not provide additional information on Wednesday.

The two former Amazon executives, now Benguela co-founders – Chris Pinkham and Willem van Biljon – are credited as being cloud pioneers and were instrumental in developing Amazon's EC2 cloud infrastructure play. Amazon EC2 had a soft launch in August 2006 and quickly became a major force in the cloud computing revolution, enabling users to access on-demand compute capacity without on-site servers.

Pinkham was vice president of engineering at Amazon and responsible for global IT infrastructure. In 2004 he initiated and managed the development of a new utility computing service which led to the launch of Amazon EC2 in 2006. Meanwhile van Biljon joined Amazon in 2005 to build out the EC2 business plan and drive product management and marketing for the EC2 service.

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Along with Pinkham and van Biljon, Benguela has also brought aboard former Amazon senior software engineer Quinton Hoole and former Amazon systems engineer Kuyper Hoffman, according to their LinkedIn profiles. And according to the company's Web site, Benguela is looking to round out its staff with an additional senior software engineer.

"Benguela is building software that will cause a seismic shift in how enterprises will deploy, utilize and manage cloud technology. We will be accomplishing amazing things for a market anxiously waiting for a solution that gives the enterprise a turn-key infrastructure solution," Benguela vice president of marketing Reza Malekzadeh wrote on his LinkedIn profile.

And Benguela engineer Girish Kalele wrote on LinkedIn that the company is making "next generation network virtualization for the data center."

Benguela, which gets its name from a city in Angola, is expected to come out of stealth mode during the LaunchPad event a next week's Structure 2010 conference in San Francisco. A description of the event notes that Pinkham will speak.