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VMware backs development streamliner JFrog in $7M round

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Image Credit: star5112/Flickr

Turning aside larger investment opportunities from venture capitalists, open-source software build and distribution company JFrog today announced a $7 million Series B investment round led by VMware. The package includes a follow-on investment from JFrog’s Series A leader, Gemini Ventures.

“Seven million dollars is what we needed,” said JFrog CEO Shlomi Ben Haim, noting that no changes to the board of directors or company C-suite are attached to the round.

Shlomi Ben Haim

Above: Shlomi Ben Haim, CEO and co-founder, JFrog

In the open-source development community, JFrog is well known for its Artifactory and Bintray tools, which automate binary development, storage and distribution. Hundreds of leading firms from Apple and Google to Costco, Yahoo. numerous universities, governments and ministries of defense use JFrog’s products to manage software development and distribute the binaries.

VMware’s investment is expected to increase interest across the software-development industry.

“App developers today are increasingly building applications by dynamically assembling thousands of code components,” Ramin Sayar, the senior VP and general manager of cloud management at VMware, said. “Managing these, together with in-house components to build and distribute software has become a huge pain point for developers and DevOps, especially when it comes to building applications for the Cloud. We are excited to see solutions like JFrog’s Artifactory complement VMware vCloud Automation Center to help customers simplify and accelerate the application development and release process in hybrid cloud environments.”

Ben Haim noted that development for cloud applications, in particular, “has a need for speed. You want to ‘push’ to the cloud, every day, fully automated.

“We are witnessing a revolution, the industrialization of modern software delivery.”

Series B investment rounds usually denote a major achievement. Ben Haim told VentureBeat that JFrog recently completed the development phase of the new distribution platform Bintray, and gained more than 630 paying customers with revenue growth of 40 percent year over year. The company will use the funds “to extend the worldwide operation to Europe and Australia as we continue supporting the open-source community and boost JFrog’s R&D and products roadmap.”

The company also offers both a non-open-source commercial and SaaS version of Artifactory, and it’s working on a commercial version of the Bintray platform.

Its chief competitors include Sonatype, GitHub and, from the Apache Software Foundation, Archiva, said Ben Haim.

Asked about how the firm plans to support the open-source community with Series B money, Ben Haim told VentureBeat that “Bintray now offers a free distribution platform to open-source projects and community, both publishers and consumers. We see more than a 100 million downloads a month for Bintray with huge projects on board such as Spring, Gradle, Groovy, RUBY, Netflix, and Vagrant, just to name a few. This community keeps growing especially with the strong integration with Artifactory. In addition, we will keep developing Artifactory OSS version and tens of extension plugins.

Ben Haim said that the pace of development enabled by the fresh money will speed completion of Artifactory and Bintray as an end-to-end, development-to-distribution standard solution for all open-source communities. The graphic below illustrates the Artifactory ecosystem for software delivery “the JFrog way.”

Founded in 2008 and based in Santa Clara, Calif., and Netanya, Israel, JFrog now has 60 employees. The firm has received $500,000 in angel money; a $3.5M Series A in 2012; $1M “Chief Scientist” Israel government grant (2009-2011); and today’s $7M Series B round.

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