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VMware to Acquire Nicira


Acquisition expands VMware's networking portfolio to revolutionize networking for the cloud and provide a full suite of capabilities for any cloud environment

PALO ALTO, Calif., July 23 — VMware, Inc., the global leader in virtualization and cloud infrastructure, today announced it has signed a definitive agreement to acquire Nicira, Inc., a pioneer in software-defined networking (SDN) and a leader in network virtualization for open source initiatives.

"VMware has led the server virtualization revolution, and we have the opportunity to do the same in datacenter and cloud networking," said Paul Maritz, chief executive officer, VMware. "The acquisition of Nicira adds to our portfolio of networking assets and positions VMware to be the industry leader in software-defined networking."

VMware will acquire Nicira for approximately $1.05 billion in cash plus approximately $210 million of assumed unvested equity awards. The acquisition is subject to regulatory approvals and other customary closing conditions. The parties expect the acquisition to close during the second half of 2012. The acquisition has been approved by the boards of directors of both VMware and Nicira and the stockholders of Nicira.

The Software-Defined Datacenter – The Foundation of Cloud Computing
Cloud computing is about agile, elastic, efficient, and reliable services, and it is achieved through sophisticated software that abstracts hardware resources, pools it into aggregate capacity, enabling automation to safely and efficiently dole it out as needed for applications. Tenants or customers utilizing the software-defined datacenter can have their own virtual datacenter with an isolated collection of all the compute, storage, networking, and security resources that they are used to. Furthermore, this virtual datacenter can grow and shrink to efficiently utilize physical resources. This is what the software-defined datacenter is all about, and it is the architecture for the cloud.

Managing networks and network services to support cloud architectures is complex, time consuming and limits the achievement of full application mobility across clouds. Nicira is at the forefront of software-defined networking, which enables the dynamic creation of virtual network infrastructure and services that are completely decoupled and independent from the physical network hardware. Many industry leaders, including AT&T, DreamHost, eBay, Fidelity Investments, NTT and Rackspace are using the Nicira Network Virtualization Platform (NVP) to accelerate service delivery from weeks to minutes and dramatically reduce complexity and cost.

"Nicira helps customers dramatically improve business velocity and efficiency by transforming how networking works in the Cloud era," said Steve Mullaney, chief executive officer, Nicira. "I'm thrilled to be joining forces with VMware to help build the software-defined datacenter."

"The value we bring to customers lies in our open approach and the richness of capabilities in network virtualization," said Martin Casado, co-founder and chief technology officer, Nicira. "The combination of Nicira and VMware brings together two pioneering teams, and gives customers the industry leading SDN solution for any cloud environment, on any hypervisor in the enterprise and with Service Providers."

VMware plans to continue to support the open principles and technologies that have made Nicira solutions successful, including the Open vSwitch to connect physical networks and multiple hypervisors and the open extensibility framework to implement business-level policies from any cloud management system. This will allow enterprises and service providers to create the most flexible network topologies that seamlessly span any cloud environment. VMware is committed to maintaining Nicira's openness and bringing additional value and choices to heterogeneous environments and the OpenStack, CloudStack and other cloud related communities.

This acquisition expands VMware's networking portfolio, which includes the VMware vSphere virtual switching, VMware vCloud Director networking, vShield Network and Security software defined services, and the VXLAN protocol to provide a full suite of software-defined networking capabilities and a comprehensive solution lineup for virtualizing the network – from virtual switching to virtualized layer 3-7 services. This will allow customers to create a pool of network capacity on top of any network infrastructure from which they can easily support tens of thousands of isolated virtual networks with the simplicity and operational ease of creating and managing virtual machines

VMware and industry leaders will be showcasing the software-defined datacenter at the upcoming VMworld 2012 in San Francisco on August 27 – August 30. Information on attending the conference can be found here.

Additional Resources

  • VMware's Steve Herrod blog here
  • Nicira's Martin Casado blog here
  • Connect with VMware on Twitter and Facebook

About Vmware

VMware (NYSE: VMW) is the leader in virtualization and cloud infrastructure solutions that enable businesses to thrive in the Cloud Era. Customers rely on VMware to help them transform the way they build, deliver and consume Information Technology resources in a manner that is evolutionary and based on their specific needs. With 2011 revenues of $3.77 billion, VMware has more than 350,000 customers and 50,000 partners. The company is headquartered in Silicon Valley with offices throughout the world and can be found online at www.vmware.com.

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Source: VMware, Inc.

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Discussion

There are 2 discussion items posted.

Why would it still take minutes to reconfigure network services?
Submitted by MARK SANDSTROM on Jul 25, 2012 @ 12:24 PM EDT


"Nicira Network Virtualization Platform (NVP) to accelerate service delivery from weeks to minutes"

Network traffic load demands vary from one extreme to other at packet transmission time granularity i.e. at microsecond timescale. Reconfiguring network services in minutes is still hopelessly slow, by the order of (hundreds) of millions.

To meaningfully improve the efficiency of networks, and profitability of network services, we need architectural innovation, rather than abstraction layers that just hide seek to the inefficiencies that in reality still in physical networks.

Aren't there technologies that keep the network connectivity and connection capacities automatically optimized based on actual data traffic load demands, at the timescale that these vary i.e. at packet transmission time granularity?

Post #1

Re: Why would it still take minutes to reconfigure network services?
Submitted by MARK SANDSTROM on Jul 25, 2012 @ 12:46 PM EDT


3rd para in above post should read:

To meaningfully improve the efficiency of networks, and profitability of network services, we need architectural innovation, rather than abstraction layers that just seek to hide the inefficiencies that in reality still exist in physical networks.

Post #2

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