Nexus backed Gluster to be acquired by Red Hat

Red Hat, the global leader in open source software, signed a definitive agreement today to acquire Gluster, a Nexus portfolio company. Gluster has quickly grown into a leader in open-source scale-out storage infrastructure, that is driving down the cost of storage.

Our thesis to invest in Gluster was based on the need for a new architecture to enable massive growth in storage with wide adoption of social media, mobility and cloud. The founding team presented a plan to us almost three years back that was both elegant in its simplicity, yet disruptive in its cost and flexibility. Anand Babu Periasamy (AB) and Hitesh Chellani convinced us in the first meeting that their open-source based software-led solution was the answer. Of course, the team behind the concept is what we are counting on in everything we do. We made a small contribution to the venture by writing a check for $3 million in December 2008 and the journey began. AB and Hitesh brought in Ben Golub to lead the team in May 2010.

Gluster evolved from AB’s belief that storage should be treated as a software problem, that leverages commodity hardware, in the same way that compute is treated today: a vision that resonated with us instantly after we met AB and Hitesh in 2008, a vision that is the true enabler of infrastructure cloud where needs for storing and managing the explosion of unstructured data could not be addressed by the expensive and non-scalable incumbent solutions. Gluster’s distributed open source file system disrupts storage economics and enhances storage scalability by orders of magnitude. Much kudos goes to AB’s excellent engineering team, 100% of whom are based out of Gluster’s India office in Bangalore : one of the few examples where a leading enterprise grade software product is conceived and developed in India. Gluster’s unique capabilities and value propositions are vetted by hundreds of customers worldwide, like Pandora, Brightcove, Box.net and others, who use Gluster’s software-only platform to store and manage multiple petabytes of unstructured data. More importantly, Gluster’s thriving open source community with hundreds of thousands of users speaks volumes to it’s thought leadership.

Gluster and Red Hat are ideally suited to carry the mission forward. Red Hat is one of the most respected technology companies and knows how to make an open source project successful and Gluster knows how to disrupt storage. Gluster’s open source storage platform should offer a perfectly complementary value-add solution to Red Hat’s open source compute and cloud stack. We expect Gluster to go places by leveraging Red Hat’s brand, worldwide open source presence,and distribution and support network.

We are incredibly proud of the Gluster team, to have created a game changing platform in a short time period since we led Gluster’s first institutional round of funding less than three years ago. It has been a privilege to work with the Gluster team. We wish them every success in the future.

Jishnu and Naren
Nexus Venture Partners

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