Webiny, a London startup developing a serverless content management system, announced a $348,000 (£270,000) seed round today led by UK investment firm Episode 1.
Webiny founder Sven Al Hamad says that Webiny is the first full-feature content management built for a serverless environment. “That means that we built Webiny from the ground up, and architected it so it works only inside serverless functions,” he said.
The company saw a need for a serverless web development tool, and decided to build it. “We believe that centralized is going to be the future of web development, and to help out the community and advance that thought, we built the first serverless content management system — and open-sourced it,” Al Hamad said.
Serverless doesn’t mean there are no servers. What it means is that developers don’t have to worry about the infrastructure resources. The cloud provider takes care of all that based on whatever is required, scaling up and down automatically.
As Al Hamad sees it, web sites are a perfect use case for this. He uses the classic Black Friday e-commerce scenario as an example. On Black Friday, commerce websites get inundated with traffic as people try to take advantage of the big sales. In this case, the cloud service just continues to add server capacity automatically based on the needs, rather than having to provision extra servers manually, and they go away automatically when the demand is gone.
He says this has a couple of advantages. It reduces the need for a big DevOps team to manage the operations side of things to provision all those virtual machines, and it frees up developers to concentrate on building a great website instead of worrying about the resources to run it.
“At the end of the day, developers can build new things much, much faster, like building the website or adding new features because he or she doesn’t need to waste time on spinning up servers just to test things or worrying about networking, load balances and all those complexities,” he said.
For now, the company is concentrating on building a community of users, but eventually the business will provide consulting and support services for companies who need it.
The content management system is the underlying software that manages a website. Some popular open-source examples include WordPress and Drupal.
Al Hamad says the idea for his company sprang up out of a need. He was running a web design and development agency. He said he tried every web CMS under the sun and just never found one that met all of his requirements. So he closed the shop and decided to build his own, and Webiny was born.