Oracle seems to have overpaid for Ravello

While the acquisition makes sense from Oracle's point of view, the valuation, if true, is at nosebleed levels.

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Oracle announced this week its intention to acquire Ravello systems. The deal, which VentureBeat reported was worth $500 million, was announced by way of a scant two sentence on the Oracle website.

Ravello has been around for a few years. in its initial guise, it was all about helping organizations "cloudburst" - that is to move peak demand application load from on-premises in infrastructure into the cloud. This was a space where many companies were trying to play, CliQr, AppZero, CloudSwitch, and CloudVelocity where all in the general space. 

It is fair to say that it was a value proposition which, at first blush sounded good, but didn't really resonate with the marketplace. So these vendors pivoted - some moved to a disaster recovery value proposition while others focused on development and testing. While those pivots made a little more sense, my understanding is that none of these vendors saw massive traction.

Which is why the reported price tag that Oracle is paying, half a billion dollars, seems incredible. Especially given the fraught state of venture funding for private companies. But who am I to quibble with a price tag that doesn't mean a lot in the scale of things to Larry Ellison.

Ravello's system allows organizations to create a container on a public cloud and, within that container, run existing legacy enterprise applications. The current proposition sees a use case where organizations can do security testing of their applications in the public cloud.

Oracle, one assumes, sees this move as a chance to help customers move workloads into the cloud - one assumes they won't be so keen on helping customers move to the Amazon cloud. Given that the future of Ravello's existing offering is unsure. Rami Tavir, Ravello's CEO, is trying to reduce customer fears and wrote that customers should: "Rest assured, Ravello's service will continue 'as is'."

Ravello was doing interesting stuff and it will be interesting to see what their future in the home of the Oracle giant looks like.

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