A10 Networks makes pivot to cloud with Appcito acquisition

Application delivery control companies making moves to fend off new open source and cloud-based tools

A10 Networks, with its acquisition this week of startup Appcito, has become the latest Application Delivery Control (ADC) company to make a big push into supporting cloud applications.

Many traditional ADC vendors have focused their platforms on helping customers manage applications in their own data centers. As more and more applications are hosted in the cloud, however, ADC companies have begun evolving their platforms to support cloud-based application management. In doing so, they find themselves competing with new, cloud-native open source ADC tools and offerings directly from cloud vendors.

“A10 is pivoting to the cloud, and that’s something they have to do to address the changing application profiles and application-delivery requirements of enterprise customers,” says IDC analyst Brad Casemore.

MORE: Appcito extends its application-aware infrastructure management platform

Appcito is a venture-backed company founded in 2013 whose SaaS-based ADC platform natively runs in public clouds including Amazon Web Services and Microsoft Azure. Appcito’s platform does advanced traffic management, load balancing and application development code delivery. It also has web application firewall capabilities and analytics to detect and remediate security threats.

IDC lists A10 as the third largest ADC vendor behind F5 Networks and Citrix (with its NetScaler product); Radware’s revenues come in behind A10’s.

“Most of the main ADC players are trying really hard to stay relevant in the age of the cloud,” says Gartner analyst Andrew Lerner. It’s a challenge though: Many new ADC users are not the traditional infrastructure buyers of these vendors, but instead are developers looking for lightweight, low-cost and easy-to-use platforms.

Lerner says open source load-balancers like nginx and haproxy are becoming increasingly popular; cloud providers have their own ADC components too, such as Amazon’s Elastic Load Balancer or Azure Load Balancer. Companies like A10 are hoping to offer ADC services for customers that need functionality beyond the basics offered by open source tools or from the cloud providers.

A10 did not disclose details of the acquisition cost, but said it hopes to integrate Appcito’s products into its offerings throughout this year and into next.

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