Companies today want to avoid the lock-in they were faced with in the past with a single provider. As a result, they hedge their bets with a multi-cloud strategy, but this creates a new problem of finding a single tool to manage everything. This is where Upbound comes in with its open source multi-cloud management tool Crossplane.
It’s a big problem, and so far companies have relied on the cloud providers to manage each one individually. While some solutions like Google Anthos and Red Hat OpenShift hit the market, there was a lack of open source tools until Upbound released Crossplane in May 2020.
Realizing the need identified by Upbound, investors rewarded the company with $ 60 million Series B to help build the open source project while growing the commercial version of the product. Altimeter Capital led the round with participation from GV, Intel Capital and Telstra Ventures.
Bassam Tabbara, Founder and CEO of Upbound, said that while the market has tried to find a solution to this management challenge, he believes his company will be the first to build an open source community in the hope of Develop this single management console and API for administration across cloud tools.
“Much effort has gone into building a single checkpoint. None of them have attacked this issue from a community perspective and created a universal level of control to make this possible [a] Community while [building] the convergence around it, ”he said.
“I think Crossplane is the first to get to a point where we now actually have a convergence effect around a single universal cloud API. It has never happened before. It’s really the first time we’ve come to one. You can now switch to Crossplane and get a declarative API that can be used to address all cloud resources and infrastructure sources from all providers. “
Tabbara points out that the project is completely cloud-native and is managed under the umbrella of the Cloud Native Computing Foundation (CNCF), which manages Kubernetes and other key cloud-native open source technologies.
He said that Crossplane allows users to choose the cloud providers they want to use – whether it’s cloud infrastructure providers like AWS, Microsoft, and Google, or cloud-native tools like Elastic, Confluent, Databricks, and Snowflake – all from one single page from manage API.
The company has grown and helped promote the open source project while developing a commercial product called Upbound (like the company) that customers can install themselves in their cloud of choice or use a SaaS version that Managed upbound for them.
It doesn’t just matter to the users. Tabbara said he also saw major vendors like AWS, Azure, Equinix, and IBM develop integrations for crossplane. He believes this is key, and it resembles the momentum we saw in 2017 when the big cloud players began to rally around Kubernetes and the CNCF.
“It really is so far that there is now a real convergence effect around Crossplane, similar to the convergence effect we saw with Kubernetes as a project and not dissimilar to the convergence we saw with Linux as a project,” he said.
It appears to be a project and commercial vision with tremendous potential that investors see as a central piece of the cloud puzzle, ready to put significant capital into its construction. If Upbound can make that vision happen it could be something really disruptive, but time will tell if they can make it happen.