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 the core changes in computer networking technology over the past 10 years.

By the earliy 2000s, software had moved into the forefront of many aspects of computer science, yet on the networking side of the ecosystem, hardware continued to reign supreme. That was until a team of computer networking pioneers led by Scott Shenker developed software-defined networking (SDN), described by NetworkWorld as “a category of technologies that separate the network control plane from the forwarding plane to enable more automated provisioning and policy-based management of network resources.”

At the core of SDN, is the OpenFlow protocol that helps manage and direct network traffic among routers and switches from different vendors. From this movement, emerged the Open Networking Foundation and the standardized, open-source approach that is now the underpinning of technologies from top networking vendors like VMware, Cisco, Juniper, etc.

These developments led to the proliferation of cloud computing, and a new challenge emerged: how do companies securely and easily manage their disparate network environments?

The UC Berkeley NetSys lab team again devised technology to address the problem. This first took shape with LEAN Network Function Virtualization (NFV) to serve the carrier market, and now is available to enterprises in a Cloud Networking as a Service model.

Scott Shenker

Co-Founder & Chairman

The Man Behind the Cloud

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.

Recognized as an industry innovator.

Multiple patents already awarded and additional applications pending. 

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