Investing in Vantage

Over the last decade, the move to cloud has undoubtedly accelerated technological innovation for companies large and small. This move has translated to over $100B of cloud spend in 2021 alone. The dynamic of ballooning spend and a “blank check” mentality toward cloud has become a hot button issue for both engineering and finance leaders. However, actually understanding how to measure and anticipate cloud costs remains opaque due to the complexity around cloud billing. 

The lack of visibility around resource consumption paired with cloud providers’ clunky pricing and billing systems has left many companies in a lurch when it comes to managing their cloud costs and resulted in margin erosion (as explored recently in this post). Cloud costs can account for 70-80% of total COGS for fast scaling companies. Even then, most companies are still tracking their cloud spend manually via spreadsheets, if at all, without truly understanding how to prioritize and improve the bottom line. 

The first step for anyone looking to optimize this enormous bucket of spend starts with visibility, and this is where Vantage comes in. 

Vantage is building a cloud cost transparency platform that helps everyone – from developers to enterprises – analyze, report, and collaborate on and optimize their cloud infrastructure costs. With a single click, developers and financial operations teams can connect an AWS account and see spending broken down by resource type and trends over time. It also offers machine learning-powered reporting on forecasted resource consumption and projected spend by service or by custom tags. Most importantly, Vantage provides the transparency all teams need to control and optimize their cloud spend. 

This is not the first time a company has set out to unravel the lengthy cloud bill. Incumbents in the space have kept the buyers away with long implementation cycles and shockingly high prices. New demands in the cloud-native era have ushered in the need for a next generation solution.

First, managing cloud spend is a multi-disciplinary problem, involving participation from cloud engineers, leadership, and finops teams. Even though the latter two roles are served with existing solutions, engineers are often left out of the conversation. We’re seeing more and more cloud engineering and devops teams taking on managing cloud spending, and demanding well-integrated solutions to their existing infrastructure. At its core, Vantage is built for developers but also serves the broader team.

Second, companies have historically only paid attention to their cloud spend after it exceeds tens of millions of dollars or in advance of a major financial event, like an IPO. Thus the existing solutions in the market are tailored for large companies with dedicated teams. However, cloud spend is not a one-time nor an at-scale problem. It is an operational problem that requires ongoing monitoring and improvements that enable early corrective action. Vantage is designed to be operational – with the upcoming notification and alerting capabilities, teams can take their minds off of constantly watching the dashboards.

Additionally, simplicity is an underrated trait especially for complex dev tools. The number of AWS services are daunting and often have complex, hierarchical nesting several layers deep. Parsing and presenting them in a clear and consumable way requires deep understanding of each cloud vendor’s subtle nuances. Many engineering teams have tried to address this problem on their own, but it can be time-consuming and expensive, especially as services change and evolve over time. Vantage provides a sleek, easy-to-use UI where important questions can be answered at-a-glance.

When I first met Vantage founders Brooke and Ben, I realized they were the perfect duo to solve these problems. Brooke was one of the first engineering hires at DigitalOcean – another a16z portfolio company that embodies developer ethos and has product design + simplicity as its core. Ben also came from DigitalOcean and worked on the core compute Droplet product before joining AWS Container Services where he developed the core thesis underlying Vantage. The pair have been living and breathing the cloud for the last seven years and are deeply familiar with the challenges in managing complex services and resources. They are also the most humble, thoughtful, mission-driven humans I’ve met. We’re very excited to continue working with portfolio alumni and wrestle the cloud “bill-east”!



The views expressed here are those of the individual AH Capital Management, L.L.C. (“a16z”) personnel quoted and are not the views of a16z or its affiliates. Certain information contained in here has been obtained from third-party sources, including from portfolio companies of funds managed by a16z. While taken from sources believed to be reliable, a16z has not independently verified such information and makes no representations about the enduring accuracy of the information or its appropriateness for a given situation. In addition, this content may include third-party advertisements; a16z has not reviewed such advertisements and does not endorse any advertising content contained therein.

This content is provided for informational purposes only, and should not be relied upon as legal, business, investment, or tax advice. You should consult your own advisers as to those matters. References to any securities or digital assets are for illustrative purposes only, and do not constitute an investment recommendation or offer to provide investment advisory services. Furthermore, this content is not directed at nor intended for use by any investors or prospective investors, and may not under any circumstances be relied upon when making a decision to invest in any fund managed by a16z. (An offering to invest in an a16z fund will be made only by the private placement memorandum, subscription agreement, and other relevant documentation of any such fund and should be read in their entirety.) Any investments or portfolio companies mentioned, referred to, or described are not representative of all investments in vehicles managed by a16z, and there can be no assurance that the investments will be profitable or that other investments made in the future will have similar characteristics or results. A list of investments made by funds managed by Andreessen Horowitz (excluding investments for which the issuer has not provided permission for a16z to disclose publicly as well as unannounced investments in publicly traded digital assets) is available at

Charts and graphs provided within are for informational purposes solely and should not be relied upon when making any investment decision. Past performance is not indicative of future results. The content speaks only as of the date indicated. Any projections, estimates, forecasts, targets, prospects, and/or opinions expressed in these materials are subject to change without notice and may differ or be contrary to opinions expressed by others. Please see for additional important information.

The enterprise is changing

Sign up for our enterprise newsletter to get the a16z take on the trends reshaping B2B and enterprise tech.