Working in startups, every day feels like a frenzy of activity, and I rarely take the opportunity to sit back and reflect on how we got here. But today we announced our $23 million Series A funding round, and it seems as good a time as any to take a step back and consider how we got here and where we’re going.

Having spent two decades in system and software engineering, with significant time in hands-on and leadership roles within cloud engineering, I’ve personally encountered the complexities and challenges that cloud-native environments often present. It was these very challenges that motivated us to start Firefly. In this post, I’ll share the origins of our company, key moments of validation, our journey to product-market fit, the impact of our new funding, and the unique qualities of our team. Join the ride.

Why we started Firefly

Our journey began out of a necessity that I experienced firsthand. I managed cloud operations in a fast-growing startup with a multi-cloud strategy. One of my objectives was to ensure the cloud was accessible to developers while maintaining control over the cost and resiliency. The struggle is real. As part of my role ensuring cloud stability, I had to ensure our cloud resources were described as code. Still, the skillsets and understanding surrounding IaC varied across cloud users in the organization. And ClickOps (manually configuring cloud infrastructure through clicks) was much easier and more accessible.

Things got unruly pretty quickly. As we grew, cloud access became more democratized — more business units (such as sales engineering) wanted to experiment hands-on in the cloud, and adding a new (shadow) account was as simple as asking the business unit for a VISA card number. Would I rather lock down cloud access and configuration rules, thus stifling innovation, or create better methods to implement IaC? Or at least have better visibility into my IaC coverage, which was a blindspot.

Then, my fellow co-founders Ido Neeman and Sefi Genis reached out to me to consult on the idea. Could I help them define a platform to tackle cloud complexity by auto-generating IaC? Given my own experiences, the choice was easy - I refused to consult, but instead decided to take the leap and join them in building Firefly. And I’ve never looked back.

The moment we knew we were onto something

The hard work and focus were fruitful – realizing we had something special came quickly. We had an early customer/design partner – a tech company with over 1,000 employees at the time – and their platform engineering team was trying to justify a new cloud platform project. This can be a hard sell to senior management since these projects can come at significant expense and engineering resources. When they used the insights from the Firefly dashboard to justify the project – and actually used it to achieve executive buy-in – I knew we were creating software with real utility. While I can’t say that I was surprised, I was thrilled to get such early validation, which has only grown since with dozens of customers that span across the Fortune 500, SMB, various tech unicorns and more.

On the verge of a market breakthrough

The sensation of being on the verge of a market breakthrough was akin to witnessing a significant achievement unfold. Early in our journey, as we engaged with cloud teams, it became clear that Firefly was more than just a tool—it was a vital framework that teams relied on to automate and optimize their cloud environments and, more importantly, how they experience the cloud. The users replaced the endless cloud console tabs with the single Firefly inventory, which provides a centralized view of everything across their accounts. Our solution’s deep usage as the source of truth for the cloud, enthusiastic customer feedback, and clear ROI confirmed that we were addressing real and significant market needs.

The impact of our funding and looking ahead

With this new funding, Firefly is poised for rapid growth and innovation. We plan to expand our go-to-market team, enrich our product offerings, and cater to a broader spectrum of challenges faced by the cloud teams. In the next year, expect to see more sophisticated AI-driven capabilities and an expanded global presence. Looking further ahead, our vision is to make Firefly a benchmark for cloud operations across industries.

Our people: the heart of Firefly

The core of Firefly is undoubtedly our people. I know it sounds cliché, but we have built an insanely passionate team that’s going to take us far here. While we are a diverse group, we have several things in common. I’ve been inspired by the team’s dedication - they truly believe that the challenge of cloud complexity is far and wide, and take personal ownership of the Firefly product and customer as if this company was their own. And that’s because it is. Firefly belongs to all of us, and we can feel it. Beyond that, I get to experience creativity, innovation, and out-of-the box thinking from my colleagues every day. These are the values that we will hold tight as we scale up – we’ll be hiring a lot post-funding, and the entrepreneurial get-shit-done spirit is something I hope we never lose.

I’ve waxed poetic enough at this point – you can tell I’m excited about the growth we’ve achieved so far. But I’ll end with this: at Firefly, we aren’t just creating solutions; we are redefining the future of cloud management. Each day brings new challenges and possibilities, and I am immensely proud to lead a team that isn’t only tackling these challenges but is also setting the stage for a new era of cloud efficiency and governance.