Asterisk Receives VC Funding

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Asterisk Receives VC Funding

AsteriskOn Wednesday, Digium, founder of the open-source Asterisk IP-PBX will announce its first round of VC funding – receiving $13.8 million from Matrix Partners. Matrix Partners was JBoss' initial investor, also an open-source solution - a Java application server. Matrix's expertise in open source was one of the deciding factors for deciding to invest in Digium. Asterisk is now at 1 million Asterisk users compared to 1/2 million at the beginning of the year - a phenomenal growth spurt and with over 1,000 downloads per day.

The funding will help the continued growth of Digium and Asterisk, especially in launching new offerings for the enterprise communications market, ranging from small to large businesses. Profitable since 2002, Digium has experienced 100% growth in each of the last several years.

"We believe Digium has the potential to become one of our most successful open source companies, as every company in the world relies on telephony and the use of PBXs in order to run their businesses,” said David Skok, a general partner at Matrix Partners and JBoss board member. "As companies continue to be attracted to the cost savings and powerful new capabilities of Voice over IP, the opportunity for Digium becomes massive. Digium is definitely in a position to become the next big open source company, behind Red Hat, JBoss and MySQL. Their current revenues, profitability, and growth rates are extraordinary.”

Update: 11:44am Wednesday
I just had one other important thought with regards to this VC funding. Mark Spencer, the founder of the open-source Asterisk movement and Digium wasn't beholden to anyone else due to any sort of major financial investment. While I am pretty certain that Adtran gave some funding to Digium, I don't think it was on the scale of this multi-million dollar funding. I hope that Mark, the Asterisk guru and "telecom rebel extraordinaire" won't have to change himself or the company too much to accomodate Matrix Partners' wishes. Let's hope Matrix Partners has a pretty much "hands off" policy, except to help grow Digium and Asterisk.

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