VMware struck a deal to acquire Dell EMC’s Service Assurance Suite platform. That platform includes software that monitors network health, performance, and root cause analysis for communication service providers.
VMware will integrate the platform into its Telco NFV portfolio. This will add automated service assurance capabilities to support virtual network function (VNF) deployments.
The suite provides visibility and analysis across physical and virtual networks and cloud environments. It can identify how resources are being used and whether service level agreements are being met.
The Dell EMC product already counts more than 50 service provider customers that in turn serve enterprises, federal, and local governments. Those customers will continue to have access to the platform’s capabilities.
A VMware spokesperson said terms of the deal were confidential, but that once closed the Dell EMC platform “will be a meaningful expansion of our NFV offerings.”
Shekar Ayyar, executive vice president for strategy and corporate development and general manager of VMware’s Telco NFV Group, tied the feature set to impending 5G network deployments. This includes operators increasingly virtualizing edge and core networks with NFV. “Service assurance is a critical need for any network,” Ayyar noted in a statement.
AT&T CFO John Stephens at an investor conference this week linked the carrier’s ongoing push to deploy SDN and NFV with its more immediate 5G deployment plans. He noted that current network upgrades will allow the carrier to perform software upgrades to its sites to activate 5G services. He explained that was part of the carrier’s NFV story as well.
“That leads you to the ability to bring down capex,” Stephens said.
The architecture of the deal is under the auspice of Dell Technologies, which is parent company to both VMware and Dell EMC.
Dell Technologies last month struck an agreement to buy VMware tracking stock in a deal that will allow Dell Technologies to go public (again) and pay down its debt. Dell Technologies owns 81 percent of VMware. It issued the tracking stock to fund its EMC acquisition in 2016.
Despite how the transaction sounds, VMware continues to have some operational independence outside of Dell.
“I am looking forward to VMware’s continued independent status, strategy, and capital allocation policy for organic investment, M&A, and shareholder returns,” said Michael Dell in a statement. Dell (the person) is CEO of Dell Technologies and is chairman of both the VMware and Dell Technologies boards.
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