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Viptela Founders Launch App Experience ‘Disruptor’ Prosimo, Reveal $25M In Seed Funding

‘Our customers and partners treat us as a disruptor of sorts. They go to their flagship accounts and say; ‘I have a new vendor that’s looking at cloud differently. Do you want to take a different approach to solving this problem and radically simplify your infrastructure?’ Prosimo Co-Founder and CEO Ramesh Prabagaran tells CRN.

Enterprise infrastructure “disruptor” Prosimo emerged from stealth mode on Tuesday with its sights set on collapsing multi-cloud networking, security, and application performance. The startup is backed by $25 million in Series A funding, the company told CRN.

Prosimo, founded in 2019, offers its Application eXperience Infrastructure (AXI) platform that is modernizing and simplifying application delivery and experience across multi-cloud environments, Ramesh Prabagaran, co-founder and CEO of Prosimo, told CRN.

Partners and customers have been a part of the “ground-up creation” of the platform, which will help ready enterprise infrastructure in light of the growing trend toward multi-cloud, said Prabagaran (pictured above).

[Related: The 10 Coolest Networking Startups Of 2020]

Not all apps are created equal. Some are web applications, others are virtual desktop apps, for example, and each different application places a different constraint on the infrastructure. Application users are also becoming more diverse, especially over the last year, when more application use is coming from remote users who may be accessing applications from different places, including multiple cloud providers, Prabagaran said.

“Everyone expects the right level of application experience, because that’s how SaaS works and that’s what we’re all used to,” he said. Born-in-the-cloud companies are good at taking a consolidated approach to application performance, which helps ensure performance. But these companies, such as Netflix, only have one application they’re trying to make work while enterprises have many, Prabagaran said.

“We’ve built a platform that helps enterprises deliver the experience required to their users and make sure the applications can talk to one another, without inheriting complexity,” he said. The AXI platform can sit on top of existing infrastructure stacks, Prabagaran said.

As such, Prosimo competes with many different kinds of vendors, including secure access players, such as Palo Alto Networks and Zscaler, application connectivity vendors, such as F5 Networks, and multi-cloud networking providers, including Aviatrix.

Despite the company’s stealth mode status, Prosimo has been in trials with customers over the last six months. Several large distributor partners have also signed on to work with Prosimo, which plans on doing all of its business through the channel, Prabagaran said.

“Our customers and partners treat us as a disruptor of sorts. They go to their flagship accounts and say; ‘I have a new vendor that’s looking at cloud differently. Do you want to take a different approach to solving this problem and radically simplify your infrastructure?’ We’re honored to be a disruptive partner of choice,” he said.

The Prosimo platform can coexist existing vendors in a customer’s environment, or can be used to replace certain tools and features, such as zero-trust or cloud peering, thanks to Prosimo’s SLA. The per application SLA includes secure access and optimized connectivity while managing cost, the company said.

“You can go down the path of taking out things that don’t make sense or things only providing marginal value on top of what our platform offers,” Prabagaren said.

Solution providers can team with Prosimo in several ways, including through reseller or managed services models, the company said. The channel can also wrap their own implementation or advisory services around the platform, Prabagaran said. “The value-add on top of the platform that partners can add is pretty high.”

Prabagaran started Prosimo alongside CTO Nehal Bhau, who was also part of the founding team at Viptela, an SD-WAN company the two started in 2012. Cisco Systems bought Viptela in 2017 for $610 million and Prabagaran joined the company as senior director of product management of the Cisco SD-WAN business.

Bhau also joined Cisco after Viptela was acquired and was previously responsible for product and engineering for Cisco’s SD-WAN business. The two left Cisco in 2019 to start Prosimo after realizing new multi-cloud use cases were starting to grow in popularity, Prabagaran said.

Santa Clara, Calif.-based Prosimo also announced $25 million in seed and Series A funding on Tuesday, co-led by General Catalyst, WRVI Capital and participation from private investors, according to the company. Steve Herrod, managing director at General Catalyst, and Lip-Bu Tan, managing partner at WRVI Capital, have joined Prosimo’s board.

The company plans to put the funding toward expanding its go-to-market approach, as well as keeping the pulse on innovation, Prabagaran said.

“A lot of new uses cases from customers are coming out -- things like optimizing performance for edge computing -- that’s something we’ve already built into the platform and it’s pushing the boundaries on what else we can do.”

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