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Google Backs Ex-HP Exec’s Enterprise Security Startup


Enterprise security startup Skyport Systems is rolling in the dough thanks to the closing of its latest funding round, reports announced on Tuesday (March 15). The company was not only started by a big name; it has some big names backing it, too.

The company was founded by former HP executive Art Gilliland. On Tuesday, reports emerged that Skyport raised $30 million in Series C funding, raising the total amount raised to $67 million, according to Fortune.

Among the backers is Alphabet’s venture capital unit, GV, along with Cisco Investments, Thomvest Ventures, Northgate Capital and InstantScale. Existing backers include Index Ventures, Intel Capital and Sutter Hill Ventures, reports added.

Skyport provides technology in the form of a special network connection card that allows businesses to connect to the Internet by its servers. Reports described it as a “hardware-assisted approach to compartmentalizing software programs.”

“Every application gets its own security envelope,” Gilliland told the publication. “We basically filter all communications, all interactions, from applications to the outside world. Anything not allowed, we block.”

According to GV General Partner Dave Munichiello (himself a former executive for Amazon), Skyport signals the hybrid hardware-software approach to enterprise security that could be changing the direction of the industry’s progress.

“If you had talked to me three years ago, I would have said it was inevitable that 100 percent of workloads would go into the cloud,” Munichiello told Fortune. “As I’ve spent more time with portfolio companies, I’ve seen a hybrid approach from enterprise IT execs. Some workload goes into the public cloud, some to a private cloud, some to a hybrid — that’s the trend I see over the next 10 years.”

Gilliland used to head HP’s enterprise security software arm before it broke into HP Enterprise, according to reports.


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