VMware Inc. [VMW] on Monday announced its seventh acquisition of the past year, while rumors are circulating that it may be near completing an eighth, underscoring the land-grab nature of the virtualization sector today.
The company's latest acquisition is of Thinstall, a privately held application vitrualization software company that it bought for undisclosed terms. VMware said Thinstall's technology would help it expand its desktop virtualization capabilities to help customers better maintain desktop environments. VMware's core virtualization technology was built to consolidate the servers that run in the back office, but enterprises are increasingly looking to streamline other parts of the network. In addition, as more and more companies deploy virtual machines to enable multiple applications to run on a single server, they are requiring new technologies to manage these virtual environments.
As Tech Confidential reported last week, some analysts are optimistic that VMware can parlay its commanding lead in the server virtualization market (its market share reportedly exceeds 75%) to expand into related businesses such as desktop virtualization.
Some of the other acquisitions VMware has made recently include Dunes Technologies, which also makes software to help companies better manage a growing number of virtual machines; Determina, which makes "memory protection" technology for virtual environments; and Propero Ltd., which makes virtual desktop technology.
Meanwhile, VMware had no immediate comment on Tuesday on widespread rumors that it had acquired FastScale, another virtualization technology. Jefferies & Co. analyst Katherine Egbert, however, found the unconfirmed reports credible enough to cite them in a research note in which she said that all these recent acquired technologies will start to be incorporated into VMware's forthcoming products. She said she remained bullish on VMware, despite a potential slowdown in IT spending, given that virtualization technologies were relatively cheap to acquire and offered a strong ROI. - Andrea Orr