Dell is doubling down on the cloud. On Tuesday, the computer maker announced that it will buy cloud-computing services company Boomi. Terms were not disclosed.
Boomi is a software-as-a-service integration company. It says it offers "the industry's only pure SaaS application-integration platform that takes the cost and complexity out of integrating applications by allowing easy transfer of data between cloud-based and on-premise applications" without requiring software coding.
'No. 1 Integration Cloud'
Dell is already involved in cloud computing through such efforts as its Dell Services Cloud and an alliance with Microsoft to offer a branded version of its Azure platform appliance.
Last year, Dell bought Perot Systems, founded by Ross Perot, for $3.9 billion. Perot Systems provides what it described as "a full range of cost-containment solutions" and became the core piece of the new Dell services unit. Earlier in 2010, Dell lost a bid to Hewlett-Packard for 3PAR, a storage company that would have been a strategic addition to Dell's cloud-computing portfolio.
Boomi says it processes "millions of transactions" each month, and has completed "tens of thousands of cloud integrations" for a wide variety of clients. The company said its AtomSphere is the "industry's No. 1 integration cloud," and it cited recent awards, including the 2010 SIIA CODiE for Best Application Integration Solution, the Always OnDemand Top 100, and others.
The Berwyn, Pa.-based Boomi has a variety of high-profile clients, including Salesforce CRM. Its technology is also used in marketing, financial management, content management, service-desk management, and human resources. Dell is a partner to Salesforce.com.
Cloud Services Sprouting Up
Steve Felice, president of Dell Consumer, Small and Medium Business, said his company "helped accelerate the move to client-server-based computing" 26 years ago, and it's attempting a "similar transformation" today by helping customers use cloud-based computing to keep costs down.
Boomi CEO and President Bob Moul told news media that the acquisition "gives us the global platform to continue to scale Boomi AtomSphere" as a leading integration solution.
A wide variety of cloud-computing services are sprouting up, as hardware, software, telecommunications and retailing companies decide that, if they want to remain relevant to businesses, they need to be part of the cloud.
In September, for instance, Verizon announced a new cloud-computing service aimed at small and midsize businesses, called Computing as a Service, SMB. The company said it was designed for "companies that have limited IT resources and do not want to own or manage their IT infrastructure."
The Verizon service is part of the company's growing cloud-computing portfolio. The telecommunications company also has a higher-end cloud platform with managed services for large enterprises. One Verizon executive said Verizon Business is evolving into an "everything-as-a-service" service.
Cloud-based services for businesses are also being offered by Amazon, Rackspace, Google, Microsoft, IBM, HP, Oracle and others.