10 Cool Products From 10 Hot Startups

Some of the most innovative IT products are developed by startup companies. Here’s a look at 10 ground-breaking products from companies that made the 2020 CRN Emerging vendors list.

Playing It Cool

Startup companies, free of legacy product portfolios and – some might say – legacy thinking, are a major driver of IT industry innovation. It’s why CRN highlights startup companies in the annual CRN Emerging Vendors list.

Expanding on that list, here’s a look at 10 cool products introduced by startups that made this year’s roundup of Emerging Vendors.

In many cases the product is the emerging vendor’s flagship offering, the core product that is the startup’s raison d’etre. In others we’ve highlighted an add-on, expansion or significant enhancement to the core product.


Top Executive: Amir Khan, Founder, CEO

Product: Alkira Cloud Services Exchange

Earlier this year when Alkira emerged from stealth mode, the startup introduced Alkira Cloud Services Exchange (CSX), a consumption-based cloud connection system the company said offers a way for cloud architects and network engineers to build and deploy a multi-cloud network in just a few minutes.

CSX provides businesses and organizations with resilient network connectivity between on-premises environments to public cloud systems such as Amazon Web Services, Microsoft Azure and Google Cloud Platform, as well as cloud-to-cloud connectivity. The system also combines global multi-cloud network services such as security, load balancing and IP address management.

A major benefit is the ability to simplify billing for multi-cloud networks and services for businesses and channel partners.


Top Executive: Adrian Knapp, Founder, CEO

Product: Aparavi Data Intelligence and Automation Platform

With so much data scattered across multiple operational and storage systems, in the cloud and on-premises, it has become a challenge for many businesses to understand what data they have and where it resides, never mind effectively manage the data and applicable security and governance rules.

The Aparavi Data Intelligence and Automation Platform reduces the cost and complexity of managing large volumes of unstructured data. The system enables data discovery with automated data classification and optimization (including removal), data lifecycle management, and easy migration to alternative data stores either on-premises or on cloud platforms.

The system can trigger action based on data content, access requirements, risk level, regulatory policy and hundreds of other criteria.

Bamboo Systems

Top Executive: Tony Craythorne, CEO

Product: B1000N Series Server

Bamboo Systems developed its next-generation B1000N Series Server that utilize ARM processors and are based on the company’s Parallel ARM Node Designed Architecture (PANDA) server architecture. The systems use embedded systems methodologies designed to run microservices-based software workloads.

Bamboo says the servers are designed for next-generation data centers, delivering high throughput with extremely low power consumption and space requirements – delivering 10-times the compute density at a fraction of power usage, according to the startup.

The servers are targeted toward Kubernetes-based applications, edge computing deployments, and data analytics and AI/machine learning tasks.


Top Executive: Prakash Linga, Co-Founder, CEO

Product: BluBracket Code Security Suite

BluBracket provides security for what the startup calls today’s most valuable and vulnerable enterprise asset – software code.

Code is often stored, managed and even shared using sites like GitHub and StackOverflow and open-source code is built into as much as 90 percent of all new applications, according to BluBracket. Development practices like that can create an open door for hackers – no wonder that code vulnerabilities have been the source of a number of high-profile security breaches, including incidents at Capital One and Starbucks.

The BluBracket Code Security Suite includes BluBracket:CodeInsights and BluBracket:CodeSecure. The tools allow businesses and organizations to discover and classify code, including understanding where their code resides and who has access to it, and detect secrets, misconfigurations and other risks within the code.

The tools provide the visibility, alerting and remediation capabilities needed to protect code from inside and external theft or unauthorized publishing. And the tools enforce security policies between security, development and DevOps teams throughout the software development, integration and deployment pipeline.

Cato Networks

Top Executive: Shlomo Kramer, Co-Founder, CEO

Product: Cato SDP with Instant Access

As the COVID-19 pandemic took hold and millions of workers found themselves working from home, demand for security solutions to safeguard their personal systems and network connections skyrocketed.

Cato Networks, a player in the SASE (Secure Access Service Edge) arena, provides the Cato SDP software-defined perimeter or zero-trust network access system for securing remote access to business applications running on-premises or in the cloud.

In March the startup launched Cato SDP with Instant Access, a new clientless access option and application portal to Cato SDP the company said delivered shorter rollout times, unlimited scalability, continuous threat protection and optimized performance. The technology makes it possible for IT managers to quickly provide work-from-home employees with secure remote access at scale.

Cockroach Labs

Top Executive: Spencer Kimball, Co-Founder, CEO

Product: CockroachDB and CockroachCloud

Cockroach Labs has been gaining attention (and a lot of venture funding) for its CockroachDB enterprise-class distributed SQL database that’s designed to support next-generation, cloud-native transactional applications. The cloud-native database works by storing copies of data in multiple locations for quicker access. Each database node autonomously replicates and repairs data.

The database colonizes available resources and is nearly impossible to kill – like cockroaches, hence the company name, according to a blog post by co-founder and CEO Spencer Kimball. It also explains the product’s motto: “Scale fast, survive anything, thrive everywhere.”

The more recently introduced CockroachCloud is a fully managed cloud edition of the database running on AWS and the Google Cloud Platform.


Top Executive: Jay Kreps, Co-Founder, CEO

Product: Confluent Cloud

Confluent is a pioneer in event streaming software, marketing a commercial product based on the ground-breaking Kafka stream-processing software that was originally developed by Confluent’s founders. Confluent’s software is fast becoming a key technology within many organizations’ real-time data processing systems.

Under the name Project Metamorphosis Confluent developed Confluent Cloud, a fully managed Kafka service that runs on AWS, Microsoft Azure and Google Cloud Platform and is available through all three major cloud marketplaces. The service makes it easier for businesses and organizations to quickly build event-streaming applications without the need to build and maintain custom point-to-point streaming data connections or manage related infrastructure.


Top Executive: Keith Alexander, Co-CEO, Founder

Product: IronDome and IronDefense

What if there were a way for businesses to “see” cyberattacks as they occur and share visual representations of those attacks with allied organizations facing the same threat?

IronNet‘s IronDome “collective defense” system is a proactive, collaborative platform that empowers organizations to collectively defend against cyber threats. Sharing correlated threat behaviors across ecosystems, organizations can mutually aid in detection, remediation, and mitigation of cyber threats to enterprises, business ecosystems, industry sectors, states and nations.

IronNet recently enhanced IronDome with new threat landscape visualizations and technology ecosystem enhancements the company says dramatically increases the visualization, detection and response capabilities of organizations when defending against sophisticated cyber threats. The system offers a new, highly visual interface that creates animations of suspicious and malicious cyber anomalies while a new IronDome Detection Correlation Dashboard improves the ability of security operations center (SOC) teams to see attacks targeting their community.

IronNet also markets IronDefense, a network detection and response platform that improves visibility across the threat landscape and amplifies detection efficacy.


Top Executive: Michael Howard, CEO

Product: SkySQL

MariaDB is the company behind the popular MariaDB database, a community-developed, commercially supported offshoot of the MySQL relational database. Earlier this year MariaDB launched SkySQL, a fully managed cloud Database-as-a-Service for both transactional and business analytics tasks.

SkySQL Foundation, the SkySQL service’s core platform, incorporates the MariaDB Enterprise Server, MariaDB ColumnStore columnar storage engine and MariaDB MaxScale database proxy. SkySQL is architected on Kubernetes and uses a ServiceNow-based portal for inventory, configuration and workflow management.

MariaDB recently expanded SkySQL’s capabilities with SkySQL Power, which seeks to overcome the customization limitations of many SaaS systems and applications. SkySQL Power provides a “power tier” of options, features and extensions to configure database instance types to maximize system efficiency, lower total cost of ownership and meet specific enterprise security, high availability or disaster recovery requirements.


Top Executive: Ankur Singla, Founder, CEO

Product: VoltShare

Volterra provides a distributed cloud platform to deploy, connect, secure and operate applications and data across multi-cloud and edge sites. DevOps and NetOps teams can improve application time-to-service and security across multiple clouds while line-of-business can distribute workloads closer to business activity at the edge.

Earlier this year Volterra debuted VoltShare, a free service that the company says radically simplifies end-to-end data and file encryption. VoltShare, downloadable software that runs on laptops and mobile devices, encrypts sensitive data for sharing with target recipients through email or collaboration systems such as Slack, Microsoft Teams and Dropbox.

Volterra says VoltShare provides a simpler and more secure approach to sharing data than traditional file sharing and encryption approaches because it does not require sending passwords or managing complex public-key cryptography.