Nefeli Networks, founded in 2017 to commercialize technology developed in the NetSys lab at UC Berkeley, is focused on simplifying the management of complex network operations.

The History of Nefeli

Nefeli Networks is a direct descendent of groundbreaking technology that has driven core changes in computer networking over the past ten years.

By the early 2000s, software had moved into the forefront of many aspects of computer science. Yet, in networking, hardware continued to reign supreme. That was until a team of computer networking pioneers, led by Scott Shenker, developed software-defined networking (SDN). SDN, and the accompanying arrival of Network Virtualization (NV), ushered in a new networking era.

From the creation of the OpenFlow protocol to the establishment of the Open Networking Foundation and the subsequent adoption of open-source and open standards by leading networking vendors like Cisco, Juniper, and VMware, SDN has driven significant shifts in networking.

As SDN uptake expanded from the data center to the enterprise WAN, then carrier networks and beyond, so did Scott and the UC Berkeley NetSys lab team. Their research has led to the establishment of LEAN Network Function Virtualization (NFV) to serve the carrier market and is now being applied to Cloud Networking through a software-as-a-service offering. Nefeli aims to bring simplicity, manageability, and security to networking across public and private clouds while improving performance and reducing costs.

Nefeli Networks provides highly automated network and security functions that can span multiple clouds with policy-based definitions, fast service creation, autoscaling, self-healing, and pervasive visibility.


Scott Shenker

& Chairman

The Man Behind Cloud Networking

Nefeli Founder and Chairman, Scott Shenker, spent his academic youth studying theoretical physics but soon gave up chaos theory for computer science. His research over the years has spanned from performance modeling and networking to game theory and economics. Scott’s research projects include software-defined networking, network function virtualization, network algorithms and protocols, cluster programming models, and Internet architecture. According to Google Scholar, he is one of the most cited authors in computer science with total citations exceeding 100,000.

In addition to his scholarly work, Scott has become a serial entrepreneur. He was part of the team that founded Nicira to commercialize software defined networking which was purchased by VMware in 2012 for $1.26 billion. He was then part of the team that founded Databricks which combines the best of data warehouses and data lakes to offer an open and unified platform for data and AI, and recently raised $1B in a series G. Nefeli is his third endeavor aimed at overcoming the complexity of the multicloud networking environment.

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