85 Cloud Computing Vendors Shaping the Emerging Cloud: Page 3

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14) Appirio
Appirio bills itself as a provider of “both products and professional services that help enterprises accelerate their adoption of the cloud.” The company’s strategy is to focus on existing platforms, such as Google Apps, Amazon Web Services and Salesforce CRM, and provide tools and services that help customers leverage those platforms. These engagements, the company believes, will serve as a springboard to broader adoption of its cloud offerings.

Appirio has more than 2,500 customers, including Avago, Hamilton Beach, Japan Post Network, Pfizer and Qualcomm.

Notable: Founded in 2006, Appirio is backed by $16.7 million in VC funding from Sequoia Capital and GGV Capital.

15) Cloud9Analytics
Designed for Salesforce.com users the Cloud9 Dynamic Pipeline Management Suite provides more detailed data and reports on sales activities with the goal of improving overall sales performance. It calls the technology "the industry’s first truly on-demand analytics platform" and claims to "deliver value in just 24 hours and require zero installation, zero maintenance and zero IT support."

Notable: Cloud9 announced in June that it had received a second round of funding from InterWest Partners and Leapfrog Ventures. It currently boasts a diverse roster of more than 50 customers, including Fandango, Ryder, and Siemens AG.

16) 3Leaf Systems
A key building block in cloud computing entails assembling cheap commodity hardware into a muscular and multi-dimensional datacenter. The start-up 3Leaf develops virtualization solutions that (when it comes to market) will turn a room full of low cost boxes into a CPU pool that can service the enterprise datacenter. Given that heavyweights like VMware and Microsoft already lay claim to this sector, 3Leaf will likely need to distinguish itself with low price to gain a foothold. But the many customers needing virtualization solutions in the years ahead suggests there’s room for more offerings. However, that won’t happen too soon: a 3Leaf representative tells me the company has “Partners but no customers at this time.”

Notable: 3Leaf has attracted an impressive a $35 million in venture funding from Enterprise Partners, Alloy Ventures, Intel Capital, Storm Ventures, and LSI Logic Corporation. CEO B.V. Jagadeesh was a VP at major virtualization player Citrix. Among its technology partners, 3Leaf lists IBM, HP and Red Hat.

17) AppNexus
AppNexus’s value proposition zeroes in on instant gratification. According to the company, building and managing infrastructure has historically been an expensive, difficult process that can take months to complete. AppNexus claims that its offering accelerates the process, allowing customers to reserve servers, launch applications and load balance them in as little as 30 minutes using a self-service interface.

The company was co-founded by Brian O’Kelley (CEO) and Mike Nolet (CTO), both of whom came from Right Media, an online ad exchange that was acquired by Yahoo for $680 million in 2007.

Notable: AppNexus has raised an $8 million Series B round of funding from Venrock and Kodiak Venture partners, in addition to an undisclosed amount of initial funding from Khosla Ventures, First Round Capital, Grape Arbor, and individual investors.

18) Platform Computing
Platform Computing provides computer infrastructure sharing software that helps organizations create clusters, grids, or clouds. While it has been offering HPC (high-performance computing) solutions aimed at enabling clusters and grids for several years, the company's primary cloud solution is still in beta. Just announced in June, Platform ISF claims to be "the first end-to-end cloud management product for enterprises to build and run their private clouds" and will be generally available this fall.

Notable: Notable customers who have used Platform Computing products for cloud computing include Harvard Medical School and Singapore-based cloud infrastructure provider Alatum.

19) AT&T
AT&T launched its Synaptic Hosting service last August. As part of AT&T’s $3 billion global network investment, Synaptic Hosting was rolled out to provide a utility computing service combined with enterprise-class managed networking, security and storage.

AT&T’s cloud technology came from its acquisition of USinternetworking (USi). AT&T is using USi technology as the foundation for its five “super IDCs” (Internet Data Centers) in the United States, Europe and Asia, each of which serves as a regional gateway to the AT&T network cloud.

Notable: The super IDCs are designed to support large-scale computing and on-demand applications via virtualized servers. In May, the company released an additional service, Synaptic Storage as a Service, a storage-on-demand offering. AT&T is using storage products from EMC for the platform, and both companies have agreed to jointly develop and market the service.

20) Caspio
Caspio is another provider of “do-it-yourself” tools for cloud computing. Caspio focuses on databases, providing an on-demand database platform that helps users create and deploy interactive web applications.

The company claims that its Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) powers over 70% of major US newspaper sites, Fortune 500 companies, government agencies, universities, non-profits, and thousands of smaller businesses.

Caspio’s most direct competitor, Coghead, closed its doors in February. (Its assets were acquired by SAP.) Since then, Caspio has launched an aggressive effort to snatch up Coghead’s former customers. Quality Behavioral Outcomes, a Hawaii-based health agency, used Caspio’s flagship service, Caspio Bridge, to migrate several Web applications within a week.

Notable: Caspio was founded in 2000 by CEO Frank Zamani, who co-founded Autoweb and led it to its IPO in 1999.

21) CA
Like several other established companies who’ve waded into the cloud space, CA did so through an acquisition, in this case the private cloud startup Cassatt.

CA purchased the bulk of Cassatt’s IP and absorbed the majority of its employees in June. CA had already been beefing up its virtualization portfolio and repurposing its management offerings to handle cloud computing. Now, though, the company owns pure-play cloud technology (Cassatt’s data center performance optimization technology) and has a team with a cloud background to lead the charge.

Notable: According to Ajei Gopal, EVP of the Products and Technology Group at CA, the acquisition strengthens CA’s ability to deliver “on the promise of Lean IT for our customers.” Cassatt had been focusing on internal clouds. As the technology is integrated into CA’s portfolio, expect it to expand beyond private data centers soon.

22) Cisco
Cisco has a long history of entering new spaces via acquisition, and cloud computing is no exception. After acquiring WebEx and PostPath, Cisco has built out a “cloud-based collaboration platform.”

Cisco is initially focusing on private clouds, rather than going head to head with public cloud vendors, such as Amazon and Google. According to CTO Padmasree Warrior, Cisco’s early roadmap is centered around they call the Inter-Cloud, “a future state in which federation will occur and CIOs will be able to dynamically and securely move large workloads from one service provider’s cloud to another.”

Warrior says that Cisco believes there are four layers in the value chain for cloud computing, and Cisco is operating in three of them. The top layer is SaaS; the second is PaaS, followed by an infrastructure-as-service layer (currently dominated by Amazon Web Services and the only layer that Cisco doesn’t plan to compete in – at least for now). The final layer is Cisco’s bread and butter: the datacenter technologies and hardware that enable cloud networks.

Notable: For more on Cisco’s cloud vision, refer to our related story: Cisco’s Cloud Strategy: “We’re Not Amazon."

23) Red Hat
Red Hat has been bulking up its virtualization portfolio for some time, highlighted by the acquisition of Qumranet in 2008. Predictably, like a forced move in chess, this led to a cloud computing effort, Cloud computing with Red Hat, a software project still in beta.

Powered by Amazon Web Services, Cloud Computing with Red Hat “provides everything needed to develop and host applications: compute capacity, bandwidth, storage, and . . . [an] open source operating system platform, Red Hat Enterprise Linux.”

Notable: Red Hat also launched a cloud provider certification program in June. This may appear to be just a marketing move, but with every company that can pronounce the word “cloud” rushing into the space, it’s not a bad idea. Moreover, the first company to sign up was Amazon Web Services, which delivers instant credibility to the program.

24) Zoho.com
Zoho.com competes head to head with Google Apps and Microsoft. To date, Zoho.com has launched 19 different applications, including CRM, email, word processing, BI and web conferencing applications.

Zoho Cloud SQL allows developers to interact with business data stored across various applications, in house or in the cloud, via SQL. Zoho Creator is PaaS software that helps users create online database applications.

In December, Zoho.com integrated Zoho Creator with Google App Engine, which according to the company “effectively makes Zoho Creator an integrated development environment (IDE) for Google App Engine that lets users deploy their applications on third-party cloud platforms.”

Interesting way to compete with a rival.

In April, the firm released Zoho Mobile, which extends Zoho applications to mobile devices, including iPhone, Android, Blackberry, Windows Mobile and Symbian.

Notable: Zoho.com is a division of ZOHO Corporation (formerly AdventNet). ZOHO Corp. has three separate business units: Zoho.com, of course; ManageEngine, which provides IT management tools; and WebNMS, which focuses on OEMs in the network and telecom space. ZOHO Corp. claims more than 40,000 customers worldwide.

25) Meeza
While most of the major players in cloud computing are located in the US, a few Middle Eastern companies are also getting into the game. Arabic for "Advantage," Meeza is an IT management and services company located in Qatar. In addition to its consulting and IT management offerings, Meeza offers clients the ability to run applications in the cloud at Meeza's state-of-the-art data center in the Qatar Science and Technology Park.

Notable: At its launch party in November 2008, Meeza announced that it had signed an agreement worth QR125 million (about $34 million USD) to provide infrastructure services for Vodafone Qatar.

26) Citrix
One of the most important enabling technologies for cloud computing, virtualization, is a Citrix strength. After acquiring XenSource for $500 million in October 2007, the company is arguably one of the top two or three virtualization vendors. (For more on Citrix virtualization roadmap, refer to “Is Citrix's $500 Million Purchase of XenSource Paying Off?”)

With the release of Citrix Cloud Center (C3) last fall, Citrix announced its intention to be a cloud infrastructure provider. C3 is essentially a repurposing, or “integration” as Citrix calls it, of existing virtualization and networking products that “power many of today’s largest Internet and Web service providers.”

The cornerstone of Citrix cloud strategy is Xen. As CTO Simon Crosby puts it, waxing hyperbolic, “Xen is everywhere in the cloud. The whole notion of cloud computing relies on Xen.”

Exaggerated or not, Citrix’s investment in Xen is indeed a competitive advantage, giving the company a clear, value-rich roadmap. The XenSource acquisition also leapfrogged Citrix to the top of the VDI market.

Notable: Add a tight partnership with Microsoft and the fact that Amazon EC2 leverages Xen, and Citrix emerges as the leading cloud infrastructure provider – although down the road fending off Cisco will be a challenge.

Next Page: More cloud computing vendors, Apprenda, Elastra, rPath, Longjump...

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Tags: cloud computing, Cloud, virtualization

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