Flash vendor Whiptail has been snapped up by Cisco in a move the networking giant hopes will bolster its Unified Computing System (UCS) products. Cisco is set to fork out $415m for the firm once the deal closes in 2014's first quarter, and said the newly acquired technology was "staggering".
"Scalable from one node to up to 30 nodes, Whiptail's systems can deliver more than four million IOPS [input/outut operations per second] and 360 terabytes of raw [storage] capacity – a truly staggering amount of solid-state performance," Cisco said in a statement.
"We couldn't be more excited about the opportunity to continue driving UCS leadership with the addition of Whiptail."
On completion, Whiptail's global staff will be integrated into Cisco's Computing Systems Product Group, led by general manager Paul Perez.
He said: "We are focused on providing a converged infrastructure including compute, network and high-performance solid state that will help address our customers' requirements for next-generation computing environments."
The New Jersey-headquartered start-up launched in EMEA last year, an operation led by former VMware and Veeam channel leader Sally Reade.
Reade was employee number 12 and three at her two previous employers' vendors, and said last year she hoped she could help Whiptail propel to similar heights.
Whiptail currently works with distributor SDG in the UK, and last year looked to grow its presence among resellers. It said its partnership with reseller Softcat was a "turning point" for the company and its channel strategy in the UK.
The reseller's solutions director Sam Routledge said that the move was logical for both firms, but that Cisco storage partners could be watching on nervously.
"There is a lot of competition out there in the all-flash space so it is going to be interesting to see if Cisco can help Whiptail," he said. "It will be interesting to see how it changes the dynamics with the organisations they partnered with previously.
"NetApp and EMC are there main partners - with Flexpod and Vblock respectively - and nothing in the short term will change, but you'd think they might be a bit nervous about the long run, but then any progress keeps everyone innovating."
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