Docker Raises $40M, Plans New Enterprise Tool for 2015

Open-source Docker virtualization container technology gets a big vote of confidence from investors, with Docker Inc. receiving a new round of financing.

Docker Inc. funding

Docker Inc., the lead commercial sponsor behind the open-source Docker container virtualization technology, today announced that it has closed a $40 million Series C round of funding. The new round of funding comes on the heels of the Docker 1.0 release and the emergence of a commercial ecosystem around the container virtualization technology.

The Series C round of funding is the second funding event for Docker in 2014. In January, Docker announced a $15 million funding round.

The latest funding round brings Dockers' total funding since its founding to $66 million, CEO Ben Golub said, adding that Docker has only now just begun spending the Series A funding money and is starting to tap into the Series B funds. "We closed the Series C pre-emptively, so we would have a full powder keg to go after the market opportunity," Golub told eWEEK.

The amount of money that Docker has raised is appropriate for what it is trying to achieve, he said. "You want to find the right level that enables you to grow and that can take you through ups and downs in the market, without becoming bloated. That's as much art as it is science."

The Series C funding round was led by Sequoia Capital, which will now have a seat on Docker's board of directors. Sequoia's Bill Coughran, who was senior vice president of engineering at Google for eight years, will be the venture capital firm's representative on the Docker board.

Golub noted that he knows Coughran well, since he had been on the board of directors at storage vendor Gluster. Golub was the CEO of Gluster prior to coming to Docker, and led Gluster through its successful sale to Red Hat in 2011 for $136 million.

Post 1.0 Growth

With the new funding round now complete, Golub said that Docker will continue to focus on its engineering efforts to push the technology forward.

The open-source Docker project only hit its 1.0 release in June, which was complemented with enterprise support and services from Docker Inc.

There has been solid demand for commercial Docker services since the launch, which is leading to a rise in the number of paying customers, Golub said.

Among Docker Inc.'s commercial services is the Docker Hub, which provides tools around the software development lifecycle, including collaboration and workflow capabilities. Docker Hub is currently an online hosted service, and there has been demand for an on-premises version, which the company is currently developing.

"That demand is coming from over 200 banks, media companies and government groups that are starting to deploy Docker and need an on-premises solution," Golub said.
A generally available on-premises version of the Docker Hub is not likely to debut until 2015.

Golub is clear on what the plan is for Docker's future. "Clearly, by doing a funding round of this size, we're committed to building a substantial company, and no one on our board is looking for a quick exit," he said. "We want to build a company that is worthy of the opportunity in front of us."

Sean Michael Kerner is a senior editor at eWEEK and Follow him on Twitter @TechJournalist.

Sean Michael Kerner

Sean Michael Kerner

Sean Michael Kerner is an Internet consultant, strategist, and contributor to several leading IT business web sites.