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After spinning out of IBM-acquisition NS1, open source startup NetBox Labs raises $20M

NetBox Labs, a new open source startup spun out of VC-backed network automation company NS1 back in January, today announced it has raised $20 million in a Series A round of funding from a slew of high-profile investors.

NS1, for the uninitiated, is a 10-year-old domain name system (DNS) and network automation platform used by the likes of Salesforce, VMware, LinkedIn and Dropbox to ensure maximum uptime for all their online services. A couple of years back, NS1 launched a new internal unit called NS1 Labs and hired Jeremy Stretch as “distinguished engineer.” Stretch was the creator and chief project maintainer for NetBox, a popular open source infrastructure resource modeling (IRM) tool developed around 2016 while Stretch was at DigitalOcean.

NetBox and chill

NetBox essentially models and documents networks, bringing together IP address management (IPAM) and datacenter infrastructure management (DCIM) to serve as a “single source of truth” for network automation — it gives enterprises deep insights into where all their infrastructure is, how it’s connected, how it’s growing and quite a bit more.

NetBox dashboard. Image Credits: NetBox

While NetBox is available for free to anyone under an open source Apache 2.0 license, NS1 has offered a managed cloud service for the better part of two years already, so it perhaps wasn’t all that surprising when NS1 revealed at the turn of the year that NetBox Labs would be going it alone as a standalone entity.

Moreover, news emerged in late February that IBM was to acquire NS1, with most of NS1’s employees joining IBM. Notable exceptions, however, included NS1 co-founder and CEO Kris Beevers and Jeremy Stretch, who are now heading up the new commercial NetBox entity out of New York alongside several other former NS1 executives and employees.

With a fresh $20 million in the bank, the company said that it plans to use the money to build out both the core open source NetBox project and the commercial NetBox Cloud service.

NetBox Labs’ Series A round was led by Flybridge Capital, with participation from IBM itself, Salesforce Ventures, GGV Capital, Mango Capital, Two Sigma Ventures, the Founder Collective, Entrée Capital and Grafana Labs CEO Raj Dutt.

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