Cisco Acquires Secure Hyperconvergence Startup

Cisco announced this week that it agreed to acquire Skyport Systems, a supplier of cloud-managed secure hyperconverged infrastructure appliances.

"This acquisition will enable Cisco to utilize Skyport’s intellectual property, seasoned software and network expertise to accelerate priority areas across multiple Cisco portfolios," Rob Salvago, head of Cisco's M&A and venture investment team, wrote in a blog post.

Cisco was an investor in Skyport, which was launched in 2013 by former executives of Juniper Networks, Cisco, and Hewlett-Packard. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

While there may be some intellectual-property aspects to the deal, Cisco is focused on Skyport's talent, wrote Eric Hanselman, chief analyst at 451 Research.

"Talent at the intersection of virtualization, security and networking is precious," he noted.

The foundation of Skyport's technology depends on specialized hardware that could be hard to integrate into Cisco's Hyperflex hyperconverged product line, Hanselman said. "The more likely technology legacy is the cloud-based security management system and the virtualization integration that Skyport built," he wrote.

Skyport's hardware-based security enforcement addressed both on-premises and hybrid cloud security issues, he said.

Cisco and many other vendors are looking to help enterprises manage their hybrid deployments as cloud and SaaS adoption grows. Security is a key part of that.