JumpCloud closes $100 million round as remote work drives cloud directory service demand
January 13, 2021
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JumpCloud, a cloud-native directory service for enterprises, has closed its BlackRock-led series E round of funding at $100 million, following an initial $75 million tranche announced in November.

Founded out of Colorado in 2012, JumpCloud offers a cloud directory platform at the cross-section between a company’s various endpoints (e.g. laptops and mobile devices), user identities, and access, serving as a single conduit that lets a company connect its workers with all the IT resources needed to do their jobs.

“Think of us as the Grand Central Station of your IT network,” JumpCloud CTO and cofounder Greg Keller told VentureBeat. “If you need to access something — say an application, file, server, whatever it may be — we are the ones that safely direct you to it. We get employees on the right train and ensure that they have a valid ticket.”

Above: JumpCloud

Historically, the directory service market has pretty much been the sole domain of Microsoft, given that most endpoints were typically Windows-based PCs. Thus, Microsoft’s Active Directory was the dominant player, and it still is in terms of on-premises installations. But we have seen a transition to cloud infrastructure and web apps, and the rise of alternative operating systems in the workplace — including Mac and Linux — not to mention the rapid acceleration of remote work, which requires employees to access company systems from any location (and from any number of device-software configurations). This shift has “exposed significant limitations to Active Directory,” according to Keller.

“These limitations required third party add-ons, such as web single-sign-on (SSO), which increased complexity and cost while limiting an organization’s ability to succeed through overly complicated IT architectures,” he said.

Growth

JumpCloud has now raised around $191 million since its inception, and the company said it will use its latest cash injection to expedite its product development and invest in its sales and marketing programs globally. Other investors in the series E round included affiliates of H.I.G. Growth Partners, OurCrowd, and General Atlantic.

The pandemic has driven demand for just about every cloud-based enterprise business, and directory services are no different. Identity and access management company Okta, which went public back in 2017, has seen its shares more than double in the past year, and it now claims a market value of more than $32 billion.

And there is little on the horizon to suggest recent trends will decelerate anytime soon.

“There are two trends today — more use of the cloud and more workers doing their jobs from anywhere,” Keller said. “This has changed how companies manage and secure those workers and their access to the IT resources they use to get work done. JumpCloud has always imagined a more flexible future for organizations with the use of mixed platforms, cloud, mobile, remote locations, and so on. Of course, we never foresaw COVID-19, but the foundations of our vision apply during the pandemic, and they will continue to apply in a post-COVID-19 world.”

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