Bright Computing takes in $14.5M to push its cluster management smarts

Bright Computing, a startup that sells hardware-agnostic Linux cluster management software, now has $14.5 million in Series B funding to staff up on customer service and sales. This cash brings total funding the company has raised so far to about $17.5 million.

Bright Computing CEO Matthijs van Leeuwen
Bright Computing CEO Matthijs van Leeuwen

The San Jose-based company’s current headcount is at 40 and it hopes to add 10 to 20 people by year’s end, CEO and Founder Dr. Matthijs van Leeuwen said in an interview.

Bright’s Cluster Manager typically competes with DIY projects cobbled together by a company’s own people using open-source tools. In some cases it faces off against management software sold by hardware manufacturers with their own gear.

Aircraft giant Boeing, for example, has standardized on Bright Cluster manager although it bought all its server from HP, he said.

DJF Ventures partner Bill Bryant, an early investor in Opscode — aka Chef — is now backing Bright Computing because while young, it already has a “world-class” customer list, he said.

“Every single tech company — Dell, Cisco(s csco), Acer, Cray, Halliburton — resells Bright’s software and others are lining up to do so,” he noted. Bright is the “market standard in terms of managing compute clusters,” he said.

“Customers rave about the ease of use — there are no professional services involved. The management suite integrates 10 or 12 discrete tasks into a single pane of glass so the admin can scale up or down, monitor the work and do health checks,” he said.

The round was led by DFJ Ventures with additional funding from Prime Ventures, DFJ Esprit and existing backer ING Corporate Investments also participated.

Bryant, Alexander Ribbink, partner at Prime Ventures, Richard Marsh, partner at DFJ Esprit, and will join Bright’s board of directors.