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CloudHealth Technologies (formerly CloudPercept) wants to help customers get more from their cloud infrastructure

Posted by Scott Kirsner  January 21, 2013 07:32 AM

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Update: In March 2013, CloudPercept changed its name to CloudHealth Technologies and announced that it had raised $4.5 million from Sigma Prime Ventures and .406 Ventures.

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As a growing number of companies turn to cloud-based services to handle jobs like data storage and processing, a new startup called CloudPercept wants to help them understand exactly what they're getting for their money.

"We help optimize the cost, performance, security, and availability of your cloud infrastructure," says founder and chief technology officer Joe Kinsella. "We're focused on software-as-a-service companies as our initial customers, but the problem of managing cloud infrastructure also exists in government and large-scale enterprises, too."

Kinsella left his job at Sonian, a local cloud archiving startup, last August to talk to prospective customers about his idea for CloudPercept. He temporarily became an entrepreneur-in-residence at North Bridge Venture Partners, and he says he took a "lean startup" approach to getting the company going. By October, he says, "I closed my first customer with a minimum viable product I had built. By December, I closed a second customer, and I had to race to incorporate the company at that point."

Kinsella recruited a former colleague, Dan Phillips, to be CloudPercept's CEO; the pair had worked together at SilverBack Technologies, a remote IT monitoring startup which was acquired by Dell in 2007. (Up until November, Phillips had been head of the Entrepreneurship Center at UMass Boston.) And last week, Dave Eicher joined as COO; he'd previously held that role at GenArts, a Cambridge maker of visual effects software.

The company doesn't yet have office space, though Kinsella tells me they are planning to nail down a location in downtown Boston "in the next few weeks." CloudPercept has been self-funded so far, and the early customers have been paying for the product. But Kinsella says it's possible that the company will look for outside funding sometime this year.

"Managing cloud infrastructure is so different from managing physical world" assets in data centers, Kinsella says, and so the software built to do that is no longer relevant. "It felt to me like disruptive innovation was happening before our eyes with cloud computing," he says.

We'll see if CloudPercept can take advantage of that disruption to build a big business...

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Scott Kirsner was part of the team that launched Boston.com in 1995, and has been writing a column for the Globe since 2000. His work has also appeared in Wired, Fast Company, The New York Times, BusinessWeek, Newsweek, and Variety. Scott is also the author of the books "Fans, Friends & Followers" and "Inventing the Movies," was the editor of "The Convergence Guide: Life Sciences in New England," and was a contributor to "The Good City: Writers Explore 21st Century Boston." Scott also helps organize several local events on entrepreneurship, including the Nantucket Conference and Future Forward. Here's some background on how Scott decides what to cover, and how to pitch him a story idea.

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