CloudBees has acquired continuous delivery (CD) and application release automation vendor Electric Cloud in a deal that bolsters CloudBees position in the rapidly evolving DevOps space.
The deal itself will see CloudBees integrate Electric Cloud’s operations into what CloudBees CEO Sacha Labourey said would be a more complete portfolio targeted at the continuous integration/continuous deliver (CI/CD) space.
Electric Cloud’s specialty is in supporting application deployments through a continuous software delivery pipeline. Its products include the ElectricFlow deployment automation, application release orchestration, DevOps platform, and its ElectricAccelerator build and test accelerator platform.
CloudBees is best known for its work with Jenkins and Jenkins X. Jenkins is an open source automation server. It’s used to automate, manage, and control software development and delivery throughout the entire lifecycle, including build, document, test, package, stage, deployment, and static code analysis. Jenkins X is a newer version that provides automated CI/CD for Kubernetes-based container environments.
Labourey explained that CloudBees’ work with Jenkins X targets greenfield application development, while Electric Cloud’s work is more focused on already-established brownfield deployments.
“The Electric Cloud people were telling customers that if they wanted to use Jenkins then they should be using our product,” Labourey said. “You could maybe bend Jenkins to work with Electric Cloud but it would have been a lot of work.”
Labourey also noted that Electric Cloud has very little presence today in Europe, which is an area where CloudBees currently generates around one-third of its business. “There is really not a lot of overlap as we have different levels of sophistication,” he said, adding that the lack of significant overlap between the companies will also allow for upsell opportunities across two-thirds of their respective markets.
In terms of future branding plans, Labourey said that “the name is TBD, but we are likely going to have it under the single CloudBees umbrella.”
Terms of the deal were not announced, but Electric Cloud has scored $64.4 million through 10 funding rounds since its founding in 2012. Investors included Rembrandt Venture Partners, U.S. Venture Partners, RRE Ventures, and Next47.
CloudBees last year acquired Codeship in a deal that bolstered its position in the CI/CD space. Labourey noted that Moritz Plassnig, who was CEO and founder of Codeship and is now vice president of cloud at CloudBees, was “lead” on the Electric Cloud deal.
CloudBees last year also closed on a $37 million equity round led by Delta-v Capital and $25 million in growth financing from GoLub Capital’s Late Stage Lending business.
Electric Cloud was recently stationed as a leader in a report from Forrester Research on continuous delivery and release automation. That position was just ahead of rivals such as IBM, Microsoft, and XebiaLabs.
It should be noted that CloudBees was lumped into the “strong performers” category in that same chart, behind Electric Cloud and in the same category as Puppet and Micro Focus.
In a different report, Gartner had Electric Cloud as a leader in its “Magic Quadrant for Application Release Orchestration” chart alongside CA Technologies, XebiaLabs, and IBM.
Another rival in the space is GitLab, which was quick to pounce on the CloudBees news. CEO Sid Sijbrandij sent out a comment on the deal questioning CloudBees go-forward strategy.
“It appears CloudBees is following the larger industry trend of DevOps consolidation,” he wrote. “However, the products they offer (Jenkins, Jenkins X, CodeShip, and Electric Cloud) don’t necessarily complement each other so it will be interesting which one CloudBees recommends to its customers.”
Labourey downplayed GitLab’s competitive position, noting that “they have a wide focus with very little depth.”
“GitLab is interesting,” Labourey said. “They do everything from A to Z, but there is really no way you can do it all. They go from bug tracking to Git to platform-as-a-service, so they are really focused on doing it all. But, they don’t have a magical wand to create more code than any other company.”
Labourey said that CloudBees is more tightly focused and “not trying to be Jira or Git.” Instead, he said that CloudBees is focused on “C to Y.”
“This is where we want to build a kingdom where we have a lot of depth and think where the actual value is,” Labourey explained. “It’s not in storing bits and pieces of code. It’s in factoring this IP as the DNA of an organization and how they build software that is core to an organization, and that’s being captured in software in our tools.”
Labourey said that CloudBees is less challenged by the likes of Chef or Puppet. “They are less interesting to talk about because they are really focused on the last mile and that is being challenged today by containers, which is a better approach to doing that,” he said.
Chef itself made news earlier this month by revamping its development, platforms, and go-to-market strategy that will see the DevOps player more tightly embrace the open source ecosystem.