MemVerge Raises $24.5M for Intel Optane-Based Infrastructure Software
Ali Longwell | April 02, 2019
MemVerge, a startup that’s building software to converge memory and storage, today announced it has raised $24.5 million in a Series A funding round and will launch a beta of its product in June. The startup’s first round of funding was led by Gaorong Capital, Jerusalem Venture Partners, LDV Partners, Lightspeed Venture Partners, and Northern Light Venture Capital. MemVerge CEO and co-founder Charles Fan, a former VMware and Dell EMC executive, said that the company will use the majority of the funding on product development and R&D. The remainder, he said, will be used to build a sales and marketing team starting in the second half of this year. Fan co-founded the startup with Shuki Bruck, a professor at Caltech Institute of Technology, and Yue Li, a postdoctoral scholar at Caltech. Bruck and Fan’s history goes back more than 20 years, when Bruck was Fan’s Ph.D advisor. The pair also co-founded Rainfinity, which was later acquired by Dell EMC. Bruck also taught Li at Caltech as a post-doctorate. The three formed the company two years ago anticipating the launch of a new data center hardware that would be “transformative to the data center infrastructure service industry,” said Fan. “Just hardware alone is not enough,” he said, which is why MemVerge’s product is a software it is christening as Memory Converged Infrastructure. “This is essentially a distributed software system support for both storage and memory APIs to the applications so we can take full advantage of the hardware in our layer.” MemVerge’s infrastructure has been in alpha and the company says it will hit beta in June. Memory-Converged Infrastructure: The need for this infrastructure comes from the boundaries between memory and storage. “In the history of computing you have memory and storage — memory is for your running programs, storage is for when you need to keep things for longer, and as a consequence you deal with I/O [input/output],” said Fan. “That is why you move memory to storage and from storage to memory, and that slows things down.” When you converge memory and storage, as MemVerge’s software does, it negates the need for I/O, thus greatly improving the speed of big data workloads. “I think it’s a revolution in the history of computing,” he said.