Cloud management company Standing Cloud has announced the close of a $3 million round of funding led by existing investors Foundry Group and Avalon Ventures. That brings a total of $8 million in funding to the fledgling cloud provider enablement platform provider.

Since VCs Foundry Group and Avalon Ventures are, in fact, existing investors, they're already represented on Standing Cloud's board of directors. But entrepreneur and TechStars mentor Will Herman will be taking a seat in the boardroom, lending his expertise as former CEO of Viewlogic Systems, Silerity, Scopus Technology and Innoveda to the startup, according to the press release.

Here's Herman explaining how he sees Standing Cloud's market play, from a prepared statement:
“Standing Cloud is well-positioned to fill an essential and growing need in the cloud market. Cloud service providers know that they need to offer an application layer for their customers, but have no effective way to build or maintain it. Standing Cloud delivers a solution to that problem today, and I’m excited to get involved.”

The way Standing Cloud works is simple: The service provider deploys it on its public cloud, and instantly gets the ability to offer a catalogue of 100 open source and commercial apps, pre-configured and ready to run. Built-in automation handles and maintains the applications over its lifecycle, which extends to scaling, backing up, upgrading and so on. This new money will go toward further development and promotion of the Standing Cloud solution, including adding new apps to that catalogue.

I'm intrigued -- I can't remember the last time a startup aimed at the service provider, rather than the consumer, was the center of a round of funding like this. I mean, Box.net just keeps raising more and more VC funds, but it provides storage, not a public cloud application layer.