Tyk raises $35M for its open source, open-ended approach to enterprise API management

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APIs are the grease turning the gears and wheels for many organizations’ IT systems today, but as APIs grow in number and use, keeping track of how they work (or don’t work) can be tricky when something goes awry. can be complex and potentially significant. Now, a startup that has created an innovative way to help with that is announcing some funding after taking its approach with larger enterprises.

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Fat, which has created a way for users to access and manage multiple internal enterprise APIs through a universal interface through GraphQL, has made an investment of $35 million, an investment it will make in hiring and managing those tools. Will use both to enhance and expand what it offers to the users. Tyke has coined a term describing its approach to managing APIs and the data they produce – “Universal Data Graph— and today its tools are being used by nearly 10,000 businesses to manage APIs, including large enterprises such as Starbucks, Societe Generale and Domino’s.

Scottish Equity Partners led the round, with participation MMC Ventures – Its only previous investor since a round in 2019 after boostersapping for its first five years. The startup is based out of London but operates in a very distributed manner – one of the co-founders is currently living in New Zealand – and it will hire and grow based on that principle as well. It has raised just over $40 million so far.


Tyke (pronounced “tyke”, meaning small/lively child) was first found as an open source side project for co-founder Martin Buhr, who is now the company’s CEO, while he was working elsewhere. , as a “load testing thing,” in his words.

The shift in IT towards service-oriented architectures, and building and using APIs to connect internal apps had them rethink the code and consider how it could be used to control the API. Added to this was the fact that as far as Buhr could see, the API management platforms that were on the market at the time – some of the big names today include Kong, Apigee (now a part of Google), 3Scale (now a part of RedHat And thus IBM), MuleSoft (now a part of Salesforce) – weren’t as flexible as his needs. “So I built my own,” he said.

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It was created as an open source tool, and some engineers from other companies started using it. As it got more attention, some of the bigger companies interested in using it started asking why it wasn’t charging for anything – a sure sign that maybe there was a business to be built here, And more credibility to come if he charged for it.

“So we made Gateway open source, and part of the management moved to the licensing model,” he said. And Tyke was born as a startup co-founded with James Hurst, now the COO, who worked with Buhr a few years ago at a digital agency.

The main motivation behind building Tyk has been as its unique selling point for customers working in increasingly complex environments.

“The interest in Tyke was that companies were unhappy with API management as it exists today,” Buhr said. “It was the right time when containerization, Kubernetes and microservices were on the rise… The way we approach the multi-data and multi-vendor cloud model is super flexible and resilient to segmentation, in a way that others are capable of.” are not to do.”

“You engage developers and deliver real value and it’s up to them to make the choice,” Hurst said. “We are responding to a clear change in the market.”

One of the next frontiers that Tyk will tackle will be those that happen within the management layer, especially when there are potential conflicts with the API.

“When a team using a microservice makes a breaking change, we want to bring it in and report it to the system,” Buhr said. “The plan is to characterize the issue and test against it, and be able to say when a schema won’t work, and to identify why.”

Even before this, Tyk’s customer list and its growth talk about much more than a business.

Martin Brennan said, “Martin and James have built a world-class team and the addition of this new capital will enable Tyke to accelerate the development of its API management platform, specifically around the GraphQL-focused Universal Data Graph product that supports this platform. It was launched at the beginning of the year.” , a director at SEP, in a statement. “We are delighted to support the team in achieving their global ambitions.”

Keith Davidson, a partner at SEP, is joining the Tyke board as a non-executive director with this round.

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