The Network Operations Command Center (NOCC) at Akamai Technologies, Global Headquarters in Cambridge, Mass. (Photo: Akamai)
In a bold move to expand into cloud services, content delivery specialist Akamai Technologies will acquire Linode for $900 million, calling it a “transformational” deal that will expand its global infrastructure platform from the cloud to the edge.
Akamai said the deal will add developer-friendly cloud computing services to its content delivery and security offerings, “creating a unique cloud platform to build, run and secure applications from the cloud to the edge,” said Tom Leighton, CEO and co-founder of Akamai Technologies. “This a big win for developers who will now be able to build the next generation of applications on a platform that delivers unprecedented scale, reach, performance, reliability and security.”
Akamai is a pioneer in online video delivery and has long been the largest content delivery network, with more than 325,000 servers in a network spanning 135 countries around the globe. Akamai delivers daily Internet traffic reaching more than 100 terabits per second for blue chip customers including 56 percent of the Fortune 500. Akamai is also a leader in Internet security, and as an early leader in distributed computing, has embraced edge computing services.
With the Linode deal, Akamai is joining the leading infrastructure players seeking to build platforms that extend from the cloud to the edge, but taking a different approach. While cloud leader Amazon Web Services, Microsoft and Google are extending their networks with edge deployment, Akamai is acquiring cloud infrastructure to connect to its existing edge network.
Bringing Linode Cloud Services to the Enterprise
Linode specializes in infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) offerings for the developer community, with 1 million customers in 185 countries and data centers in 11 global markets. The Philadelphia-based company is privately-held, and based on open source technologies. Its offerings include compute, storage, cloud orchestration and developer tools.
“We started Linode 19 years ago to make the power of the cloud easier and more accessible,” said Christopher Aker, founder and CEO of Linode. “Along the way, we built a cloud computing platform trusted by developers and businesses around the world.
“When we started to look at our long-term roadmap and how to deliver the best possible customer experience, we knew it would require more — more network, more security, more scale,” Akers said in a blog post. “Those are things Akamai does better than anyone. Combining the things Akamai does well with the things Linode does well brings these together under one roof at massive scale, creating the world’s most distributed compute platform — from core to edge.”
In a conference call, Akamai officials said they expect to expand Linode’s locations and infrastructure capacity. “We can really scale up the business,” Leighton said. Akamai also said the impetus for its expansion into cloud was interest from customers.
“We’re interested in developers, and really care about a developer-friendly environment,” said Leighton. “But the primary objective is to take Linode and scale that up to our large enterprise customers. Our customers have been pretty explicit that they wanted us to have this cloud capability and create end-to-end cloud solutions.”
Shares of Akamai were off by about 5 percent in after-hours trading after the deal was announced.