Networking Startup 128 Technology Raises $21.5M To Help With Its Channel Charge

Software-centric networking startup 128 Technology has raised $21.5 million in a new round of funding with big plans to revolutionize the network industry through channel partners.

"This is the largest transformation in our lives in terms of the network. That is not going to happen by itself, that's going to happen because the partners are going to make it happen and they should make an awful lot of money as a result of participating," said Andy Ory, co-founder and CEO of 128 Technology, in an interview with CRN.

"Our goal is to be catalytic to a new generation of solution providers that can wrap our technology in their value proposition and help take customers to this new world of service-centric networking," said Ory. "We want [partners] make the lion-share of the money."

[Related: CloudGenix CEO Blasts Cisco's Viptela SD-WAN Acquisition, Talks 'Game Day' Channel Engagement]

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Burlington, Mass.-based 128 Technology, named in CRN's 10 Coolest Networking Startups of 2016, has raised $21.5 million in a Series C funding round, bringing startup's total capital raised to $57 million.

The company will use the funding to grow its global presence and accelerate expansion through channel partners. Ory said some of the funding will be spent on hiring new channel-focused positions inside the company we well as adding more resources to its partner-facing marketing organization as the vendor starts a recruitment charge.

"We are actively recruiting and onboarding partners in all major theaters that we operate in, which is North America, APAC and EMEA," said 128's recently hired vice president of solution partners Brian Norris. "Partners are very quickly understanding and seeing the economic value that they can create by partnering with us … They're seeing they can develop meaningful practices around 128 Technology."

The startup's 128T Networking Platform is a software-based, distributed routing and network services solution sold as a monthly subscription. The platform uses secure routing to simplify network architectures, provides end-to-end control and visibility without disrupting existing network infrastructure, and enables customers to build networks that are session-based, software-defined and services-centric.

The startup's motto is "The Internet is broken. We're here to fix it."

"Everything that is within the networking industry is an incremental improvement on an already complex, burdened construct. You're not going to get the things you want which is an agile, cost-effective, secure, simple, service-centric network -- you cannot innovate where we are today," said Ory. "What you can do is disrupt. You can change the context. You can look for new technology. You can think differently, and yes, you can absolutely have a service-centric network that embodies all of those things."

Norris said the company is still in the early stages of launching a formal partner program. The startup is seeking to recruit system integrators, managed service providers, network designers and solution providers looking for "meaningful relationship," he said.

"Over time, 128 Technology is going to be ubiquitous, and we think that the enabling agent to that is the partner economy that we're going to develop around it," said Norris.

Investors in the Series C funding round include G20 Ventures, executive management, and individual investors.

The startup launched publicly in 2016. Ory previously founded Acme Packet in 2000 and served as its CEO and president until Acme was acquired in by Oracle in 2013 for $2.1 billion.