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Rollbar snags $6 million for error monitoring

Rollbar, which provides a real-time error monitoring SaaS offering, recently advanced its cause, securing $6 million in series A funding this week to further build out its engineering and sales operations, among other things.

Bain Capital led the funding round with participation from Cota Capital. Rollbar co-founder and CEO Brian Rue told TechTarget the funding will help the company continue to innovate, to add new integrations and to increase its base of cloud-native customers.

Those customers include the likes of Twilio, Salesforce.com, Blue Apron, Dell, Kayak, One Medical, Instacart and Zendesk. They use the Rollbar error monitoring system to build better software, faster.

Makes building software easier

Describing Rollbar as simply “a tool to help make building software easier,” Rue said the software sits alongside enterprise engineering teams’ CI/CD workflows and works with other logging and monitoring tools. It monitors errors in real-time as new software is deployed and notifies IT staff of any problems it catches.

The software’s real-time capability means that it often catches errors before customers can see them, let alone report them, Rue said.

San Francisco-based Rollbar also provides error grouping and aggregation, prioritization of the most critical errors, telemetry, and support for the AWS Lambda serverless computing system.

“Our telemetry feature gathers all the data on what’s happening in the program before the error occurs,” providing a timeline that is helpful with debugging, he said.

Rue said many of Rollbar’s customers started out using Splunk or Sumo Logic, which both offer log management, analytics and “operational intelligence” features, but they soon run into limitations with those platforms.

Rollbar for regulated industries

Earlier this year, Rollbar delivered a release of its software for users in regulated markets. In April, the company released a version of Rollbar that is compliant with regulations and standards like the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) and ISO 27001. That means that any errors that contain protected health information or other sensitive data will be safe in compliance with these regulations.

Features supporting the compliant version include data encryption at rest, using a different encryption key per customer, Security Assertion Markup Language (SAML) based single sign-on and a suite of audit controls.

The origins of Rollbar

The idea for Rollbar resulted from Rue needing to address an engineering problem he encountered while working as CTO of Lolapps, a social gaming company he co-founded that later was acquired. The problem was that error monitoring began to falter as the system grew.

“The engineering problem back then was we very quickly reached the issue of scale,” he said. Beyond that, “the [error monitoring] tools that were available didn’t really work very well,” he added.

So, Rue and his team set out to build their own tool, perfecting it along the way as he saw an opportunity to help other developers. That effort led to Rollbar as a commercial product and to the new round of VC funding to help advance the technology further.

Salil Deshpande, managing director at Bain Capital Ventures, in a statement, said he believes Rollbar is positioned to become a key error-management platform for engineering teams.

“We saw that many companies developing software rapidly, yet reliably, had turned to Rollbar to provide the visibility they need to remediate issues that inevitably occur with such a rapid pace,” he said in a statement.

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