Cisco snags SightPath

Cisco Systems last week announced a definitive agreement to acquire privately held SightPath for $800 million in stock.

Cisco is buying the network appliance maker to help customers create so-called content delivery networks using existing Internet and intranet infrastructures. Content delivery networks let enterprise customers quickly deploy data-intensive applications such as real-time video and online training to employees throughout an organisation, Cisco says.

SightPath's products will also enable service providers to offer content delivery services to their customers.

SightPath's appliances continually collect data on Web traffic, congestion and server load, in order to route a user's request to the most optimal server. The company's gear also distributes content closer to the edge of the network. These capabilities help ensure that Web content and other content-rich applications are delivered efficiently, Cisco says.

Cisco expects the acquisition - its 54th since 1993 - to close by mid-summer.

SightPath in Waltham, Massachusetts, was founded in 1998. Its 76 employees will continue to be managed by SightPath CEO Jim Ricotta and will join Cisco's Content Services business unit in the Enterprise line of business. Ricotta will report to Cisco Senior Vice President James Richardson, Cisco says.

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