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Brier Dudley's blog

Brier Dudley offers a critical look at technology and business issues affecting the Northwest.

December 18, 2014 at 6:00 AM

Seattle cloud startup Skytap lands $35 million

Talk about a holiday bonus. Seattle software startup Skytap is ending the year with a $35 million infusion from venture capitalists.

Skytap will use the money to expand its product offerings, build its network of partners, expand overseas and hire dozens of developers and salespeople.

Skytap helps companies manage and deploy online computing environments, providing what it calls “environments as a service.”

Founded in 2006, it’s one of several ripening, cloud software startups in the Seattle area that are likely to have big stock offerings or acquisition deals in the next few years. Others include Apptio, Avalara and Chef.

Skytap is not yet profitable because it’s still spending heavily to get big and expand into new markets.

Skytap image of Culverhouse

Skytap image of Culverhouse

Last year it refocused its business to emphasize enterprise customers and has since doubled its number of subscribers, according to Chief Executive Thor Culverhouse. He wouldn’t specify sales but said the company is still growing.

“We think we can double the business again next year,” he said.

Culverhouse said an initial public offering of stock isn’t a primary focus, but “it shouldn’t be more than a couple of years” before Skytap’s ready for an IPO.

A more pressing concern is accommodating the team.

Skytap just moved in April to offices on Second Avenue, close to Pioneer Square. But it’s likely going to have to move again soon — not because the neighborhood’s sinking and settling thanks to the tunnel project, but because it’s growing so fast.

Culverhouse said Skytap now employs 110 and should reach 170 by the end of 2015.

Altogether the company has raised $64.5 million. The $35 million round was led by Insight Venture Partners and joined by existing investors OpenView Partners, Ignition Partners, Madrona Venture Group and Washington Research Foundation.

Skytap is driving a transformative change in its industry by empowering companies to deploy innovative software more rapidly,” Insight’s managing director, Deven Parekh, said in a release. “With this funding we expect Skytap to continue on its current growth trajectory and further solidify itself as the leader in enterprise-ready development and test environments.”

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Comments | Topics: cloud, Enterprise, seattle

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