First Read

A first take on enterprise IT technology news and events.

Riverbed Renames Product Lineup

The company's portfolio now falls under the umbrella brand Riverbed Application Performance Platform.

Riverbed Technology officials in November 2013 announced that the company, which had made its name in the WAN optimization space, was expanding its product and market strategies to better reflect its growth over the past few years into other markets, from network management to application performance.

Six months later, Riverbed—which company officials say is now in the $11 billion application performance infrastructure space—is taking the next step of that effort by renaming its products to better reflect what each product does and how they work together. The renamed products are housed under the name the Riverbed Application Performance Platform.

Riverbed's initial products were its Steelhead WAN optimization offerings—designed to improve the movement of applications over wide-area networks—and now includes the Granite product lineup, which enhances the delivery of storage to organizations, the StingRay application delivery controller, Cascade network management software and Opnet application performance management solution.

The word "steel" is now in the names of all products, according to the company.

"Product names such as Granite and Stingray are cool, but there was little connective tissue or meaning between the names of our various product families," Bob Gilbert, chief evangelist and senior director of marketing, wrote in a post on the company blog. "Now our product names contain a strong reinforcement and that is 'Steel.' Most large modern structures, such as stadiums and skyscrapers, bridges and airports, are supported by a steel skeleton. Even those with a concrete structure employ steel for reinforcing. Steel also has another powerful connotation at Riverbed and that is the fact that our groundbreaking Steelhead WAN optimization product has the name 'Steel' on the front-end. Different connotation as it was originally named after a fish."

SteelHead keeps its name—though it now sports a capital "H"—while Granite is now SteelFusion. Stingray is SteelApp, Whitewater SteelStore, Opnet, Cascade and NEOP are SteelCentral, and FlyScript is SteelScript.

Riverbed's reworking of its product and marketing strategies has come amid persistent rumors that the company was for sale. In January, officials with fund management firm Elliott Associates said they were considering a $3 billion deal to buy the company. In a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission at the time, Elliott officials lauded Riverbed for its technology, but said the company was undervalued and that Riverbed executives had not taken the steps needed to increase its value to stockholders.

Elliott officials met with Riverbed executives in November and December to discuss their viewpoints. Riverbed executives said at the time they were reviewing Elliott's suggestions.