As we head into 2014 we wanted to say a huge THANK YOU to all the people who’ve taken the time to talk to us this year and helped us get our new start-up off the ground. Your advice and feedback has been invaluable in helping us get Outlyer started, and myself and Steven are now working on Outlyer full time with some amazing progress since we launched mid-October.

How You Helped Us Take the Leap!

Myself and Steven both worked at Alfresco where I headed up their Cloud service and Steven the DevOps team. We spent a lot of time setting up monitoring using the most popular tool out there, Nagios, but found it didn’t work well in today’s dynamic, Cloud environment.

Before quitting our jobs, we spent 6 months talking to almost 60 companies, large & small, to validate if other Cloud companies had the same problems we did. We will be publishing a blog of our results early next year, but it turned out about 70% of the companies we spoke to were running Nagios or a Nagios fork, and a lot of people identified with the need for new tools in this space to help.

Without many of you taking the time to chat to us this year, we may never have got the validation we needed to quit our jobs to pursue Outlyer full time. All the feedback we’ve had so far will go into ensuring we build the right product that solve real problems many of you have today doing monitoring for your Cloud services.

Early Adopter Customers

In addition to getting market validation, it was important to us that we had a paying customer to work with us as we developed the product to ensure companies were willing to pay for a new product in this space and help provide the direction we need to ensure the product works in a real environment.

We actually ended up with two large Enterprise customers who signed up quickly after we started the company. Both of them are launching Cloud Services and were struggling to get their monitoring & alerting setup using the existing open-source tools. With their support, we will be able to finish the first version of Outlyer, and validate that it works on high traffic Cloud Services running hundreds of servers.

However we’re not finished, we’re still talking to other Cloud companies who need help with their monitoring, so if you are also interested in having early access to our service and a loud voice in the direction of our roadmap please email me to find out more.

Microsoft Ventures London Cohort

Last week it was announced that Outlyer would be part of 12 companies in February joining Microsoft Venture’s new London accelerator for 3 months. Microsoft selected us as part of the program due to the credibility of our team, and because they saw a lot of potential for our start-up.

We’re extremely excited to be part of the accelerator next year, it’s provides more validation that we made the right decision to pursue Outlyer this year, and will greatly accelerate our business so we can help many more companies around the world solve their monitoring & alerting problems.

Heading into 2014…

After a great start in only 2 months, 2014 looks to be a fantastic year! We plan to launch a public version of our service when its ready (targeting Q2 next year), invite all you in London to some information rich DevOps evenings to share our DevOps & monitoring expertise, and of course continue working with great customers to help them solve their monitoring & alerting issues.

We hope you’re as excited about the new year as we are and wish you an amazing New Year too.