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As APIs and microservices become critical tools to drive innovation and automation for a wider range of companies, they are also creating new management challenges. Enterprises are attracted by their potential to create greater flexibility but must find ways to coordinate these cloud-based services.
Kong, one of the new breed of companies trying to address this problem, announced today that it has raised $100 million in venture capital at a valuation of $1.4 billion. Tiger Global Management led the round, which also included investment from Goldman Sachs, Index Ventures, CRV, GGV Capital, and Andreessen Horowitz.
In a blog post announcing the funding, Kong CEO and cofounder Augusto Marietti said APIs have become the linchpin for driving the cloud transformation of enterprises. “Many of the conveniences of our digitally connected, modern lives — like using Amazon’s Alexa to play music over your home speakers from your Spotify account, asking your car’s navigation system to find a less congested route recommended by Google Maps or ordering your favorite meal on Doordash — would be impossible without the APIs that connect companies with their vendors, partners, and customers,” he wrote. “Our digital world is becoming fully programmable with two secular trends: cloud traffic and services are growing exponentially each year, creating decentralized but hyper-connected enterprises.”
The company began life as Mashape back in 2009 by creating an API marketplace. The company developed Kong, an open source management tool for APIs and microservices in 2015. The product soared in popularity. So the company sold its marketplace business and renamed itself Kong as it focused on building services with Kong at the core.
The company’s flagship product, Kong Konnect, is a connectivity gateway that links APIs to service meshes. Using AI, the platform eases and automates the deployment and management of applications while bolstering security. Among its notable customers, Kong claims GE, Nasdaq, and Samsung.
The company intends to use the latest funding to expand marketing, grow its customer service team, and accelerate product development.
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