F5 set to launch edge platform after $500m Volterra takeover

F5 set to launch edge platform after $500m Volterra takeover

Francois LocohDonou.jpg

Cloud security company F5 has completed its US$500 million purchase of edge company Volterra, less than three weeks after it was announced.

Following the deal, the combined company said its Edge 2.0 platform will address challenges found with current edge solutions that are built on CDNs and have limited security features. This new enterprise-focused edge is security-first and app-driven, with unlimited scale, said F5.

François Locoh-Donou (pictured), F5 president and CEO, said: “I am incredibly excited to welcome Volterra to the F5 family and get to work bringing Edge 2.0 — a key part of our adaptive applications vision — to customers.”  

Volterra itself is only a few years old, its founders having previously worked for a company taken over by Juniper in 2012.

CEO Ankur Singla and CTO Harshad Nakil set Volterra up in 2017 with more than $50 million in funding and over 30 customers including Softbank using its distributed cloud platform.

Singla said: “Current edge approaches were not designed with enterprises in mind. When Harshad and I started Volterra, we knew the edge would need to be delivered with the scale of public clouds, but with management and security integrated with the data centres where so many enterprise apps still live.”

Former Ciena executive Locoh-Donou said: “Joining forces, we will deliver the enterprise-grade features, including world-class security and scale, that have been missing from the edge until now.”

Singla said: “Given F5’s leadership in adaptive applications and their vast enterprise customer base, I could not imagine a better partner to empower customers’ business transformation through modern apps.”

Volterra said its multi-cloud technology solves key edge and security problems and has allowed it to quickly gain more than 50 enterprise customers, including three of the top 15 global telcos.

SoftBank CIO Keiichi Makizono welcomed the merger. “We are excited to work with Volterra to architect an unprecedented edge computing environment across our 5G network,” he said.

“Volterra has demonstrated that it solves critical operational challenges within existing telco cloud service offerings, increasing operator efficiency and revenue streams while delivering a cloud-native experience that will drive developer adoption.”

The merged F5 and Volterra said the sophistication of cybercriminals and nation states has increased to the point that commodity security is no longer capable of effectively protecting enterprises.

The edge should meet the requirements of the app, not the other way around, said the company. “The Volterra platform is based on industry-standard containers, enabling enterprises to ‘build once, deploy globally’, rather than rewriting code based on a closed edge provider’s constraints.”

The company said its “platform represents the first open edge architecture, enabling DevOps and developer teams to seamlessly shift workloads across clouds and even to data centres, without reimplementation or retooling, enabling the largest scale and best performance possible”.




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