IBM opens the door to hybrid world with cloud acquisition

“This acquisition will enable IBM to deliver a public cloud-like experience within the client’s own data centre..."

IBM has acquired Blue Box Group, a managed private cloud provider built on OpenStack, as the tech giant accelerates its move into open hybrid clouds.

Blue Box is a privately held company based in Seattle that provides businesses with a private cloud as a service platform, based on OpenStack, with IBM refusing to reveal financial terms of the deal.

Through Blue Box, IBM aims to help businesses rapidly integrate their cloud-based applications and on-premises systems into OpenStack-based managed cloud.

Blue Box also strengthens IBM Cloud’s existing OpenStack portfolio, with the introduction of a remotely managed OpenStack offering to provide clients with a local cloud and increased visibility, control and security.

“IBM is dedicated to helping our clients migrate to the cloud in an open, secure, data rich environment that meet their current and future business needs,” sats Jim Comfort, General Manager of Cloud Services, IBM.

“The acquisition of Blue Box accelerates IBM’s open cloud strategy making it easier for our clients to move to data and applications across clouds and adopt hybrid cloud environments."

Comfort says the move further accelerates IBM’s commitment to open technologies and OpenStack.

At present, IBM has 500 developers dedicated to working on open cloud projects to bring new cloud innovations to market.

With Forrester Research recently finding that more than twice as many firms use or plan to use IBM Cloud as their primary hosted private cloud platform than the next closest vendor, Comfort believes Blue Box is a strategic fit into the IBM Cloud portfolio.

“This acquisition will enable IBM to deliver a public cloud-like experience within the client’s own data centre, relieving organisations of the burden of traditional private cloud deployments,” Comfort adds.

Comfort says enterprises are seeking ways to embrace all types of cloud to address a wide range of workloads.

Consequently, he believes the move “reinforces IBM’s commitment to deliver flexible cloud computing models” that make it easier for customers to move to data and applications across clouds and meets their needs across public, private and hybrid cloud environments.

With Gartner forecasting that 72 percent of enterprises will be pursuing a hybrid cloud strategy this year, Comfort claims that it is increasingly important for companies to leverage multiple models while maintaining consistent management across their cloud platforms.

“No brand is more respected in IT than IBM,” adds Jesse Proudman, founder and CTO, Blue Box. “Blue Box is building a similarly respected brand in OpenStack.

“Together, we will deliver the technology and products businesses need to give their application developers an agile, responsive infrastructure across public and private clouds.

“This acquisition signals the beginning of new OpenStack options delivered by IBM.

"Now is the time to arm customers with more efficient development, delivery and lower cost solutions than they've seen thus far in the market.”

IBM currently plans to continue to support Blue Box clients and enhance their technologies while allowing these organisations to take advantage of the broader IBM portfolio.

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