Last week Citrix (previous CloudAve coverage) announced that Citrix Startup Accelerator, their incubator arm, will invest in the PaaS startup Cumulogic (previous CloudAve coverage). On the first look, this is not a significant news and many in tech media didn’t even bother to cover it like some of the other PaaS news around the industry. But if we dig deeper, this points to some interesting trends which could shape the PaaS market in the coming years. In this post, I will briefly highlight why this news is interesting from my point of view.
- First, and foremost, this once again confirms what I have been saying for the past 2 years or so in this blog. PaaS is the future of cloud services. Nope, PaaS is not going to take away infrastructure market. Rather, PaaS will be the face of IT with infrastructure playing its role in the background. Unlike in the past where Ops people were holding the keys to IT, it will be the developers who are empowered and will be the face of IT while Ops people will be doing their magic in the background.
- With PaaS slowly gaining momentum, it is critical for Citrix to have a PaaS play. Their investment in Cumulogic, a PaaS player, is a first step in their thinking on PaaS. Cumulogic has taken the service provider route where they partner with cloud service providers helping them offer PaaS to their customers. Citrix is also strongly wooing service providers with CloudStack and the partnership between Citrix and Cumulogic could go a long way in taking care of the need for PaaS in a federated cloud marketplace.
- After starting out as a single language Java PaaS, Cumulogic is slowly morphing as a Polyglot platform. They are also repositioning themselves as a proprietary alternative to CloudFoundry (previous CloudAve coverage), VMware’s open source PaaS offering. Citrix, by investing in Cumulogic, could use them as a part of their strategy against VMware. Also, as CloudFoundry (and VMware) has started dating OpenStack, Citrix needs the help of a PaaS offering to counter the OpenStack market pressure.
- The partnership with Citrix will also help Cumulogic, which has very little investment compared to many other startups in the PaaS space, who can tap into Citrix’s resources in going to the service providers (and even enterprises).
It is still too early to speculate on where this mating dance will go but it does offer some insights into Citrix’s strategy and the very importance of PaaS in the coming years. We will have to wait and see how this shapes up in the coming 1-2 years.
- Citrix Backs CumuLogic (cloudcomputing.sys-con.com)
- Citrix invests in platform-as-a-service company CumuLogic (infoworld.com)