Speedinvest invests in Datapath.io

Datapath.io provides Network Performance Management for (Net)DevOps

Cloud Application Performance Weakest Link

The cloud ecosystem has developed at a breathtaking pace since its emergence about 2 decades ago. Today adoption is pretty much universal with 1/3 of IT spend happening in the cloud, and cloud computing infrastructure and platforms growing around 25% YoY to an estimated $100B+ in 2016, driven mainly by the increase in SaaS application workloads.

Being able to offer reliable and high performance Web/Mobile applications is critical for cloud customers. We all know the headlines around Google seeing that an extra 0.5 seconds in search page load time dropped traffic and revenue by 20%, and Amazon finding out that every 100ms of latency cost them 1% in sales, for example.

Application performance optimization is where DevOps spend much of their time – hence the rapid growth of solutions like AppDynamics and New Relic. However, Internet performance remains an Achilles’ heel of application performance and is often the weakest link. To optimize networking performance DevOps lack

1) Granular visibility

2) Easily accessible solutions (deep network engineering skills required)

3) That are economically viable (no huge hardware investment)

Cloud customers with the required resources and skills can turn to the networking equipment vendors and build their own solutions. CDNs are good solutions for static content, less so for dynamic content, ads, transactional data or e-commerce. There is a clear opportunity in the market for a service that delivers rich Internet performance management capabilities to DevOps and IT application managers through an easy to use dashboard.

This is why we could not be more excited about our investment in datapath.io together with Target Partners and a select set of business angels.

datapath.io was founded in 2012 by a Sebastian Spies, an expert in carrier-grade networking technologies and Sascha Coldewey, a serial entrepreneur in the e-commerce space.

Using its own reimplementation of the Border Gateway Protocol (BGP) running on commodity hardware, datapath.io monitors the real-time network performance and characteristics of 600K+ networks (prefixes) globally from 70 vantage points. It uses this information to

1) Provide detailed and granular access to individual application performance as a function of end user network/location.

2) Easily set network performance requirements and rules (e.g. switch routing when latency to US West increases > 50 ms)

3) Automatically update routing tables and re-route traffic overriding standard BGP routing based on customer requirements/preferences

Congratulations to datapath.io for coming out of the Beta and the general availability of their NP² (Network Performance Platform)!

Marie-Helene Ametsreiter: The customer’s voice

After almost two decades in corporate environments, Speedinvest partner Marie-Helene Ametsreiter has carved out her own role in the firm and helps startups understand their users.

On paper, Marie-Helene Ametsreiter might be the most corporate person at Speedinvest. But in person, she’s far from that and makes it very clear: “I’ve always built new businesses.” During her studies in the 90s, she focused on the telecommunications industry and landed her first job at Mobilkom Austria (later A1). Long before we all owned an iPhone or Android, Marie-Helene was involved in establishing mobile networks in Austria and Eastern Europe. “I’ve always felt like a founder“, she recalls her corporate experience which was full of diverse roles.

Despite almost two decades in managing positions, Marie-Helene admits that joining Speedinvest was a bit of a challenge: “The first weeks were tough, I sort of had to find my own role.“ Eventually she realized which of her strong points would be valuable to the young firm. Creating a marketing strategy for Speedinvest, Marie-Helene is responsible for turning the venture capital company into a brand and even household name in the European startup ecosystem. As investment manager, she further advises portfolio startups like Greetzly and Wikifolio.

“I like to see products from a customer’s point of view”, Marie-Helene says of her approach. She is convinced that if people don’t understand what a startup is selling, it won’t be successful: “You have to question things with a certain naivete.” According to the marketing expert, you have to be able to explain your product with only one sentence. After all, behind all the data are real people.

Aside from challenging startup founders with her curious questions, Marie-Helene’s corporate experience has come in handy at Speedstartupstudio. Understanding corporate structures and needs, she supports the incubator building new companies and maintaining relationships with corporations and partners. Starting 2016, Marie-Helene will run Speedinvest’s first German office in Munich, further establishing connections with the startup community and other investors.

Having been with Speedinvest for more then a year now, her biggest learning is one that she would probably never have had in a corporate environment: “What was new to me is that revenue doesn’t matter all that much. For a lot of startups in this early phase, having a unique technology or a strong, growing customer base is as important.“