Digium, the company behind the popular Asterisk open source PBX, has just taken $13.8 million in Series A funding from Matrix Partners. As usual, Om has all the details as well as a nice little interview with Mark Spencer, Digium’s founder and the creator of Asterisk. Mark claims he’s a “lazy programmer” and that’s why he’s kept Asterisk so simple. (I know people who would disagree with both parts of that statement.) Preston Gralla thinks this “should be the final nail in the coffin of old-style PBXs” and I have to agree.
Asterisk runs on cheap hardware, and is infinitely customizable. Given all that, why would anyone buy an old-style PBX, or not replace their existing PBX with Asterisk?
In fact, at O’Reilly we’ve done exactly that and have recently replaced the PBX at our Sebastopol, California headquarters with Asterisk. Stay tuned for more information about that in the coming weeks here on ETel. We’re big fans of Asterisk at O’Reilly - we’ve published lots of Asterisk articles and everyone’s favorite Asterisk book (Asterisk: The Future of Telephony), we’ve had Mark and other Asterisk-related speakers at several of our conferences, and now we’re using Asterisk as our main communications platform.
The press release announcing the VC funding states:
With the anticipated growth of IP-based communications and the continued acceptance of open source, Digium has a unique opportunity to become a dominant player in the telecommunications market.
That seems pretty obvious from where I’m sitting, and I have no doubt that Digium will have great success and be an even bigger open source success story in the future than it is today.