Cloud enablement

Cloud Watch: More and More Mergers

Big cloud-based deals are the trend lately, particularly on the applications side. More about that in a second. First, we open this Cloud Watch with a few items from the infrastructure end of things.

  • Other companies continue to announce the hiring of Cisco Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: CSCO) executives. James Urquhart, formerly part of the cloud team at Cisco, has joined enStratus as vice president of product strategy. As CRN noted Wednesday, Urquhart is leaving just as Cisco launches CloudVerse, its latest plan for cloud management.

  • At our sister publication Information Week, Charles Babcock has listed VMware Inc. (NYSE: VMW)'s best and worst moves of 2011. Tops on the "best" list: VMware's decision to offer software to manage virtual machines. That puts VMware in competition with practically every big enterprise-software vendor, but the alternative was to cede this promising market to them.

    The worst move? Making customers pay for memory.

  • In case you missed it: OpenStack, the open-source cloud operating system is overstretched, argues Enrico Signoretti, CEO of consultancy Cinetica, in a pre-Thanksgiving opinion piece at The Register. His concerns: It's too ambitious and possibly too all-encompassing.

  • Now, more about the deal flow: On Thursday, IBM Corp. (NYSE: IBM) agreed to spend US$440 million cash acquiring DemandTec, which offers cloud-based analytics software. That's less than a week after SAP AG (NYSE/Frankfurt: SAP) signed a $3.4 billion deal to buy SuccessFactors, which sells cloud-based human-resources software. In reaction to the latter, BusinessWeek is suggesting Jive Software Inc., yet another cloud-based enterprise-software vendor, should redo the numbers on its pending IPO.

    Twilio, which offers cloud-based telephony and messaging, raised $17 million earlier this week. We've mentioned them before. (See Twilio Banks $3.7M and, um, Top 20 Terrible Company Names.)

    Separately from all that, Microsoft Corp. (Nasdaq: MSFT) and HP Inc. (NYSE: HPQ) signed a four-year deal on Thursday, whereby Microsoft's applications will be offered on HP's cloud services.

    Elsewhere in the cloud lately:

    — Craig Matsumoto, West Coast Editor, Light Reading

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