Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE) today said it reached a deal to acquire Plexxi and will weave the company’s software-defined data fabric networking technology into its hyperconverged infrastructure (HCI) and composable infrastructure products.
“Through this acquisition, we will deliver hyperconverged and composable solutions with a next-generation data network fabric that can automatically create or re-balance bandwidth to workload needs,” wrote Ric Lewis, SVP and GM, software defined and cloud group at HPE, in a blog post.
Also today, Plexxi announced updates to its hyperconverged software stack that builds on its intent-based networking capabilities. And it added tighter integrations with VMware and Nutanix software. Plexxi’s software now interoperates with VMware’s NSX Manager to automatically discover and visualize NSX networking components attached to the Plexxi fabric. It also automatically discovers and configures vSAN storage.
Additionally, the software now automates configuring and node balancing for Nutanix, said Denis Vilfort, vice president of marketing at Plexxi.
Software-defined data centers already benefit from hyperconverged compute and storage technology. But networking is typically the weak link, Vilfort said. Plexxi’s hyperconverged networking allows enterprises to pool these data center resources and run virtualized workloads on one converged, data center fabric.
“We believe you should have one, big data center fabric that connects it all,” Vilfort said. “And we are so pleased to see that HPE agrees with us 100 percent.”
Plexxi, founded in 2010, has raised $83.4 million to date.
Neither company would say how much HPE paid for Plexxi. HPE expects the deal to close in its third fiscal quarter, which ends July 31. Both companies say they want to integrate Plexxi’s technology into HPE’s composable and hyperconverged products “as soon as possible.”
In the company’s most recent earnings statement, HPE said its hyperconverged products grew at over 200 percent, year over year. But it still lags far behind HCI leaders Dell EMC and Nutanix in both revenue and market share.
Plexxi’s technology will boost HPE’s hyperconverged play, Lewis said in the blog. “Plexxi will enable us to deliver the industry’s only hyperconverged offering that incorporates compute, storage, and data fabric networking into a single solution, with a single management interface and support,” he wrote.
HPE also plans to integrate Plexxi into its composable infrastructure portfolio, called HPE Synergy. “In the near future with Plexxi, we will deliver a composable rack solution that will seamlessly extend our composable fabric to a broader set of use cases across the data center,” Lewis wrote.
Vilfort said the HPE-Plexxi technology will allow enterprises to pool resources and move at cloud speed in on-premises data centers.
“What you want is 100-percent cloud experience in your data center,” he said. “How do you get that? Through composable, which is why HPE bought us.”