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Skytap, Inc.
Company typePrivate company
Founded2006 (2006)
FounderBrian Bershad
Hank Levy
Steve Gribble
HeadquartersSeattle, Washington
Key people
Brad Schick (president and CEO)
Servicescloud computing
Number of employees

Skytap, Inc. is a private company based in Seattle, Washington offering a public service for cloud computing. Skytap provides self-service access to environments for learning, developing, testing, training, and running enterprise applications. The company was founded as Illumita in 2006 and renamed in 2008.[1][2]Skytap is also offered by IBM to enable enterprises to migrate and modernize their core business applications.


Illumita was founded by Brian Bershad, Hank Levy, and Steve Gribble, a trio of University of Washington professors who had done research on virtualization and cloud computing, and by graduate student David Richardson.[3][4] Illumita changed its name to Skytap in 2008, and launched its first product, Skytap Virtual Lab, in April of the same year.[5] Skytap received early funding from the Washington Research Foundation. As of 2011, the organization is funded by Insight Venture Partners, the Madrona Venture Group, Ignition Partners, Bezos Expeditions, and OpenView Venture Partners.[6] Skytap Virtual Lab expanded in scope, and was renamed Skytap in 2008.

In 2011, Skytap won the Best of VMworld award in the public/hybrid cloud Computing Technologies category for Skytap Cloud,[7] and the company has been named to annual top cloud computing provider lists from Deloitte, Geekwire, Seattle Business Magazine, and the Puget Sound Business Journal.

In March 2018, Skytap added John Ludeman to its leadership team as SVP of Engineering. Ludeman joined Skytap after 30 years of engineering experience at Microsoft.[8]

In August 2019, Thor Culverhouse stepped down as CEO and former CTO Bradley Schick has been tapped as his replacement.[9]


Skytap is an enterprise service purpose-built for the development and testing of complex applications. Users can import existing virtualized applications or build new applications in the cloud. Environments can be accessed through any modern web browser, REST-based application programming interface (API), command-line interface (CLI), or application lifecycle management tool (Jenkins, Visual Studio TFS, etc.) Skytap uses a browser-based interface for all system management, and hosts a library of pre-configured virtual machine images. Using either these images or their own imported VMs, users can create sharable configurations of one or more machines, and securely connect to active machines via a proprietary HTML5-based browser client.


  1. ^ Kanaracus, Chris (April 10, 2008). "Startup Pushes Virtual Labs as a Service". PCWorld. Retrieved March 14, 2012.
  2. ^ Dudley, Brier (April 10, 2008). "Seattle startup Skytap rents out virtual lab space to software developers". The Seattle Times. Retrieved March 14, 2012.
  3. ^ Timmerman, Luke (January 4, 2011). "Skytap, Fresh Off Boston-Led $10M Financing, Seeks to Make Cloud Computing Work Better". Xconomy. Retrieved March 14, 2012.
  4. ^ Huang, Gregory T. (January 3, 2011). "Skytap Scores $10M More, Led by Boston Investor OpenView". Xconomy. Retrieved March 14, 2012.
  5. ^ Cook, John (April 10, 2008). "Illumita is now Skytap, unveils first product". Seattle Post-Intelligencer. Retrieved March 14, 2012.
  6. ^ "Investors". Skytap. Retrieved March 14, 2012.
  7. ^ Marshall, David (September 5, 2011). "TechTarget Announces "Best of VMworld" 2011 Award Winners". VMblog. Retrieved March 14, 2012.
  8. ^ "Tech Moves: Former Zulily exec joins Lululemon as strategy and digital chief; Skytap adds Microsoft vet as engineering SVP; and more". GeekWire. March 23, 2018. Retrieved March 27, 2018.
  9. ^ "Tech Moves: Skytap CEO Thor Culverhouse hands reins to CTO; Apptio CMO Chris Pick retires". GeekWire. August 14, 2019. Retrieved December 15, 2020.

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