CenturyLink Government Cloud Delivers FedRaMP Certified IaaS Product In Partnership With VMware

CenturyLink recently announced the release of the CenturyLink Government Cloud, an IaaS platform for federal government agencies. The CenturyLink Government Cloud is enabled by means of CenturyLink’s use of VMware vCloud Government Services, a FedRAMP-accredited IaaS product available to CenturyLink as a result of its participation in the VMware vCloud Air network Managed Services Provider Model. CenturyLink’s new product offering will be available to federal government agencies through the company’s General Services Administration contract. CenturyLink Government Cloud represents a key addition to its hybrid cloud portfolio as it attempts to expand its footprint in the lucrative government cloud space.

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CenturyLink Acquires Database As a Service Vendor Orchestrate

Cloud infrastructure and hosted IT solution provider CenturyLink has announced the acquisition of Portland-based Database as a Service vendor Orchestrate. Orchestrate provides a database as a service platform specifically engineered for rapid application development. Orchestrate delivers multiple databases that allow developers to “store and query JSON data” in ways that empower developers to integrate geospatial, time-series data, graphs and search queries into applications without worrying about managing the operations of the databases themselves. Ochestrate’s ability to provide a portfolio of NoSQL databases means that CenturyLink customers stand to enjoy enhanced abilities to build high performance, agile, big data applications for use cases that involve real-time streaming data, internet of things use cases and mobile applications. CenturyLink’s acquisition of Orchestrate complements its recent acquisition of predictive analytics vendor Cognilytics as well as the launch of Hyperscale, its high performance cloud instance offering designed for big data and computationally intensive workloads. The acquisition of Orchestrate illustrates the increasing confluence of cloud and Big data product offerings as vendors increasingly seek one platform to fulfill their infrastructure, application development, data storage and analytic needs.

CenturyLink Acquires Savvis for $2.5 billion

Telecom giant CenturyLink has decided to acquire Savvis for $2.5 billion in a move that signals early consolidation within the cloud computing industry. CenturyLink announced a deal whereby Savvis stock would be acquired for $40/share or 11% above the April 26, 2011 closing share price. CenturyLink’s acquisition of Savvis also involves the assumption of $700 million in debt, resulting in a total deal valuation of $3.2 billion. Under the terms of the transaction, Savvis shareholders would receive $30/share and $10 in shares of CenturyLink’s common stock. The acquisition enables CenturyLink to expand upon its existing hosting and colocation capabilities and include, alongside them, Savvis’s IaaS cloud computing platform. Together, CenturyLink and Savvis will operate a total of 48 data centers worldwide, composed of the union of Savvis’s 32 data centers and CenturyLink’s 16 data centers. CenturyLink announced plans to integrate Savvis as a distinct business unit that retains its current leadership team headed by Savvis chairman and CEO, James Ousley. The telecom company’s acquisition of Savvis comes upon the heels of its recent acquisition of Qwest for $10.6 billion in the increasingly consolidated telecommunications vertical. Savvis is known for its large enterprise customer base and annual revenues that are close to a $1 billion. In an interview with ZDNet’s Larry Dignan, Bill Fathers, President of Savvis, noted that cloud based revenues averaged $8 – $10 million a quarter, with 350 of its 3500 customers using its cloud based platform, Symphony. The remainder of Savvis’s revenues are generated by colocation, managed services such as application hosting and network services. Cloud revenues constitute a subset of Savvis’s managed services revenue. Rumours have swirled about the impending acquisition of Savvis since the recent acquisitions of Terremark by Verizon and NaviSite by TimeWarner. Leading industry analysts such as Gartner’s Lydia Leong contends that the acquisition could bode well for Savvis provided that the company is allowed to run semi-independently. Nevertheless, the larger question posed by this acquisition concerns whether acquired cloud vendors such as Terremark and Savvis can continue to deliver the level of product innovation of highly agile competitors such as Rackspace and Amazon.