Cassatt, the infrastructure management software company started by BEA Systems founder Bill Coleman, is running out of money, the victim of the global recession and moves by top-tier vendors such as IBM, HP, Dell and Sun in the cloud computer and converged data center arenas. Coleman says he has been shopping Cassatt around with little success and that the company's products may end up being sold in bankruptcy.
About six years ago, Silicon Valley mainstay Bill
Coleman-at one time a Sun Microsystems executive, and later a founding member
of BEA Systems-started Cassatt.
The company was founded to build software that helps enterprises manage huge
and distributed infrastructure environments, and could have played a major role
given the rise of cloud computing.
However, according to a published report, Cassatt is on its way out, the
victim of the global recession and competition from larger players.
In an interview with Forbes.com April 27, Coleman said Cassatt
the end of its existence, and that he has been looking for a buyer for several
months without much success. He didn't name any company he had had talks with,
although the Forbes report mentioned Google and Amazon.com having backed off
quickly after initial contact. Coleman also said if a buyer isn't found, the
company's assets could be sold in a bankruptcy proceeding.
Cassatt apparently has burned through more than $100 million over the past
six years, and while some enterprises have shown an interest in the Cassatt
Active Response software, few have moved beyond the testing phase.
Click here to read about the enterprise trend toward private clouds.
"What frustrates me is my own naivete," Coleman told Forbes.
"I thought I could give companies something radical that had a proven
return on investment, and they would be willing to change all their companies'
computer policies and procedures to get that. Right now it's hard to get people
to get beyond proof-of-concept tests or a data center energy analysis."
Cassatt's impending demise comes at a time when cloud computing and
converged data centers are becoming important trends in the industry. Top-tier
vendors-including IBM, Dell, Hewlett-Packard, Cisco
Novell and VMware-have unveiled strategies designed to
integrate server, storage, networking and software into a single data center
entity, fueled in large part by virtualization.
In the same vein, those companies and others, such as Amazon.com and Google,
are pushing compute clouds, both internal and public, as a way for businesses
to increase their agility and flexibility while reducing operating and capital
Wrapped around all this are management software initiatives from a host of
large and smaller vendors designed to handle the increased complexity that
these environments will create, similar to what Cassatt was trying to do.