Stateless looks to disrupt network-as-a-service market with novel software-defined interconnect platform

Stateless’ technology is designed to let service providers effectively deliver and monetize Layer 3 Network Services, but while it is built for MSPs, it will be a while before they have access to it.

Murad Kablan, Stateless CEO and co-founder

Boulder CO-based Stateless, which emerged from stealth in January, has announced the launch of their product, their Luxon software-defined interconnect platform. Luxon is designed to enable colocation and cloud MSP providers to deliver – and monetize – composable Layer 3 Network Services to interconnect points

The problem Stateless is addressing is the lack of automation of the different paths and Layer 3 services for a service provider’s tenants, which will maintain quality of service, visibility and control, and allow them to monetize Layer 3 effectively.

“The average enterprise uses five clouds, but they don’t move every workload to the cloud, and have been shifting workloads to colos and MSPs as a result,” said Murad Kablan, Stateless’s co-founder and CEO. “The result has been the creation of an explosion of interconnectivity, with a 48 per cent CAGR.”

Kablan said that effective monetization of this potential relies on being able to use Layer 3 services.

“Enterprises need a simple product with flexible customized services,” he stated. “Some colos provide this with Layer 2, but it’s very brittle. The pressure is on the colo to find way to help tenants reach endpoints.”

Stateless addresses this with technology that Kablan and Eric Keller, his co-founder, developed in research work they did at the University of Colorado Boulder.

“Our vision is to provide this innovation through the ability to create customized networks on demand,” Kablan said. “Simple design is key, and this product is the first step towards that. Our software-defined interconnect gives colos the ability to deliver and monetize Layer 3 network services like TGP and firewall.”

Simon Wheeler, Stateless’ Director of Product Management detailed how Luxor’s technology works, beginning by explaining what it is not

“It’s not another manifestation of NFV,” he said. “NFV and VNS are the wrong approach for networking, because they take physical appliances and virtualize them. This can’t scale, and is inflexible. It’s a hardware management approach to a software problem. We have modelled our architecture around Web scale services and broken them down into microservices. That avoids complexity and having too much to manage, particularly as most firewall customers never use most of the firewall services. It also gives users flexibility and resilience.”

Wheeler said that Luxor has inherent high availability, so has inherent failover capability with no packet loss.

“Our automation capability also allows the system to update while it is still live,” he added.

Out of the gate, Wheeler said that Luxor will launch with BGP, packet filtering and a library of network functions that will grow over time.

“It is also innately multi-tenanted, so one system can handle thousands of networks by design, not just by coalescing VMs,” he stated. “That solves the noisy neighbor problem, because we have a reusable microservices infrastructure.”

Wheeler also emphasized that Luxon’s architecture provides users with extremely granular API access.

“The data rich API is a major focus of ours – not just an add-on,” he said.

If this all sounds too good to be true for the channel, there is a catch, at least in the short to mid term. For the time being, Stateless will be focusing their efforts on key colo partners for their go-to-market.

“We are an early stage startup, and so for the first couple of years, we will focus on direct sales to colo companies like Equinix,” Kablan said. “We have started explorations with partners, but we are looking at about a two-year time frame before we develop that part of the business.”

“We will vet potential partners and make sure we are partnering with the right people,” said Rebecca Warren, Stateless’ Director of Marketing.

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