Citrix Acquires Virtual Desktop Provider Kaviza
Citrix Systems (Nasdaq: CTXS) revealed May 23 that it intends to acquire Cupertino, Calif.-based virtual desktop software maker Kaviza. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.
Kaviza and Citrix, of nearby Santa Clara, Calif., have been strategic partners since April 2010, so the transaction was not a big surprise to industry insiders.
Kaviza's VDI-in-a-Box, a plug-and-play virtual desktop system that has been gaining traction, enables just about anyone (not necessarily an IT specialist) to get a deployment up and running for a small or midsize business. Kaviza's solution truly is an automated, turnkey way to do it; users install the software on a commodity server, and the software finds all the system nodes automatically.
Citrix, the world's second-largest VDI provider (behind only Hewlett-Packard), needed the IT that Kaviza brought to the table because it had not previously addressed the SMB space with a purpose-built VDI offering. Most of Citrix's customers are large enterprises.
When Kaviza is running, the virtual desktop runs in its own browser-type window with all the application functionality needed. Little or no latency is apparent. Users can continue to use their local applications as normal. Read Frank Ohlhorst's product review here.
Kaviza One of First to Do VDI on iPads
Four-year-old Kaviza, with its VDI-in-Box product, was one of the first to provide VDI support for iPads, iPhones and Android smartphones running on a data center hypervisor-Citrix Xen or VMware ESX 4.1.
The company came out with a new remote-client version, Kaviza Remote, in April. Citrix XenDesktop provides the virtual desktop connector, and Kaviza the distribution method.
With the new client-side version, automatic sync-up is available if the connectivity is cut off.
"One of the biggest differentiators for Kaviza is that we can do all this for about one-third the cost of most of the others, because we plug right into inexpensive servers, and you can use any type of existing device as the client," Krishna Subramanian, Kaviza's chief operating officer, told eWEEK.
Kaviza and Citrix are striving to keep all VDI deployments under $500 per seat, Kaviza CEO Kumar K. Goswami, who will become a Citrix vice president when the deal closes, told eWEEK via email.
"We started Kaviza with a razor-sharp mission of eliminating the cost and complexity we saw with enterprise-class VDI approaches," Goswami said.
"The Kaviza mission has been to make desktop virtualization affordable, easy and practical. As desktop workloads are very different from server workloads, we saw an opportunity to offer an easy-to-use, all-in-one VDI solution at a fraction of the cost through a purpose-built grid architecture that seamlessly scales on off-the-shelf hardware."
Kaviza was founded by virtualization and VDI veterans from HP and IBM. The company is funded in part by a grant from the National Science Foundation.