App analytics startup Bionic today emerged from stealth with $17 million, a combination of series A and seed funding. The Palo Alto, California-based company plans to put the funds toward investing in R&D as it expands its client base internationally.
MarketandMarkets forecasts that the app analytics market will grow from $1.05 billion in 2018 to $2.85 billion by 2023. Among the factors driving growth are the demand for apps and an influx of mobile advertising. Because ads are a critical source of mobile app revenue, it’s increasingly important that bugs don’t interfere with their placement. In 2019, there were more than 204 billion app downloads, a roughly 6% increase on the year before. And by one estimate, mobile advertising represented 72% of all U.S. digital ad spending in 2019.
Bionic was cofounded by CEO Idan Ninyo and CTO Eyal Mamo, who spent over five years in Unit 8200, the Israeli Intelligence Corps unit of the Israel Defense Forces responsible for collecting intelligence and code decryption. Ninyo’s plans to relocate to the U.S. were disrupted by the pandemic, forcing him and Mamo to conduct Bionic’s series A round remotely.
Bionic’s platform reverse-engineers apps to create architectural and data flow breakdowns. It monitors core changes in production, enabling developers to define guardrails that prevent app updates and upgrades from negatively impacting performance. Bionic is agentless and ostensibly works across environments, locations, and infrastructures, from on-premises apps to hosted cloud-native microservices. (Microservice architectures arrange apps as collections of related services.) Moreover, the process is automated and can be deployed in what Bionic claims amounts to minutes.
“We are using many of the reverse engineering techniques we leveraged in Unit 8200 to deliver an automated and comprehensive inventory of customers’ applications: where they are deployed, configurations, APIs, data sources, changes, and more,” Ninyo told VentureBeat via email. “In minutes, we are delivering what used to take hundreds, even thousands of hours to compile across systems, spreadsheets, and other manual collection methods. We are able to show the full applicative dependency and dataflow map of the production environment, how different services consume APIs, what data is flowing between services, and data sources.”
Bionic competes with a number of app analytics startups, among them Apptopia and Adjust. But the company says its tools have experienced a rapid uptake in adoption and are already being used by IT, operations, and security teams at pharmaceutical, financial service, and technology companies.
“The pandemic accelerated digital transformation efforts across almost all organizations, especially since employees are working from home and enterprises are becoming more reliant on their digital offerings,” Ninyo continued. “That has made the issue of application chaos ever more acute for enterprise IT teams. All these organizations realize that they must maintain compliance, reduce risk, and improve resiliency without slowing down the rate of development.”
Bionic’s series A round was led by Battery Ventures investors Dharmesh Thakker and René Bonvanie. Additional investors include former Goldman Sachs CTO Don Duet, former Barclays CIO Sameer Jain, and Ariel Maislos. The company currently has 20 employees.