Posted by: Ryan Shopp
BladeLogic, BMC, CA, EMC, HP Software, IBM Tivoli, NCCM, SolarWinds
Well AlterPoint has found a home. The last of the early/original NCCM (Network Configuration & Change Management) vendors, focused on Enterprise, has been acquired. Others have come along in the later days, but AlterPoint, Rendition and Voyence (formerly PowerUp Networks) are now all part of another organization. Rendition is part of HP Software via the Opsware acquisition, Voyence is part of EMC, and Emprisa is part of BMC. IBM & CA decided they had a close enough solution through their Micromuse & Aprisma acquisitions respectively. An adventure for these companies that started back in 2001ish now sees all of them part of a more holistic solutions.
In the end for my favorite of the bunch, AlterPoint (yes, i’m biased), the end wasn’t what the team along the way had in mind. It’s great to see a home for the software that can continue to take care of some of our great customers including household names like Citigroup, Microsoft, E-Trade, Yahoo, Hertz and many others. The acquisition to me personally brought closure but also reminded me of the great team and journey that I personally had the experience to be part of. I spent about 4 years at AlterPoint and worked with some really great people that were amazing at what they do. A number of those strong players these days are over at another great company in Austin that many people reading this blog may know called Solarwinds. Others found themselves helping other network and systems management companies in Austin and beyond. It was a great ride (at times) and in retrospect I miss those days and those experiences and hope again some day to get to work with one or more of them. Alright, enough of that sentimental, memories type stuff.
NCCM was a great play that in my retrospective perspective was like what Firefox has done versus Microsoft. It provided a real challenge to an established vendor that had fallen asleep at the wheel. What do I mean by this? Cisco and it’s CiscoWorks product line, since they own pretty much all the networking hardware market, was the incumbant. The software was really struggling to solve the problems of it’s customers and simply wasn’t a priority to them. Along came the NCCM vendors and soon enough that all changed. Cisco after a few years of seeing NCCM success and hearing it from their customers, really started putting significant efforts back into their software products that competed against the NCCM vendors…they even embraced one of them and did an OEM deal with Rendition after evaluating all of us. They learned from that and in the end they are the ones who stand most victorious from my perspective. I think either directly or indirectly or however you want to look at it they learned more about the value of management software and it’s affect on hardware and sales in general. From that I’m sure we will see in the upcoming month some loosely associated results when the announce their “California” Blade Server and explain more about their relationship with BMC (a.k.a. BladeLogic, RealOps, Emprisa). This is destined to help spark and shake up the Data Center Automation market and even more the Data Center itself. This is going to be interesting!
So one last hats off to the NCCM vendors, a final salute to AlterPoint and to all those who put in their blood, sweat and tears helping build NCCM.
some news coverage links around the AlterPoint acquisition: