Inside Advanced Scale Challenges|Thursday, September 20, 2018
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NodeSource Raises Cash as Node.js Expands 

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Capping what could be called The Year of Open Source, Node.js JavaScript runtime vendor NodeSource announced the results of its latest funding round on Christmas Day 2017, raising its total venture investments to more than $34 million since its founding in 2014.

The San Francisco-based startup said its $17.5 million Series B funding round was led by Silicon Valley Bank and Industry Ventures along with existing investors Crosslink Capital and RRE Ventures. The funds will be used to expand engineering and marketing services as the Node.js runtime gathers momentum among enterprise developers.

NodeSource has carved a niche as among the first commercial providers of Node.js for the enterprise. The company contends that Node.js is among the fastest growing open source projects. The vendor's current customers include Comcast (NASDAQ: CMCSA), Goldman Sachs (NYSE: GS) and PayPal (NASDAQ: PYPL). Most are using the NodeSource platform to run enterprise applications running on server-side JavaScript at scale.

The startup's strategy is "all about empowering organizations to successfully adopt, operationalize and scale Node.js to drive digital transformation initiatives," NodeSource Founder and CEO Joe McCann noted in a statement announcing the results of the funding round.

As Node.js makes inroads within the enterprise, DevOps teams continue to struggle with ongoing security issues. A survey released in November by NodeSource and software security startup Sqreen found that more than one-third of the Node.js developers and executives it polled expect to be hacked. Indeed, many were resigned to large-scales attack over the next several months.

Still, another company survey released last June found that 89 percent of respondents said they are boosting hiring based on the number of Node.js projects. Development projects based on Docker application containers were a distant second (62 percent) followed by NPM software (28 percent), which is used to manage JavaScript tools.

As investors flock to startups attempting to commercialize popular open source technologies such as Node.js, the number of initial stock offerings also has grown. NodeSource found that more than a quarter of those executives it surveyed last year expect a surge of IPOs by open source companies this year. They cited IPOs last year by API specialist Mulesoft Inc. (NYSE: MULE), data prep vendor Alteryx Inc. (NYSE: AYX), Hadoop software provider Cloudera Inc. (NYSE: CLDR) and enterprise software developer Appian Corp. (NASDAQ: APPN), which raised about $75 million in a May stock offering.

About the author: George Leopold

George Leopold has written about science and technology for more than 30 years, focusing on electronics and aerospace technology. He previously served as executive editor of Electronic Engineering Times. Leopold is the author of "Calculated Risk: The Supersonic Life and Times of Gus Grissom" (Purdue University Press, 2016).

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