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Oracle Quietly Buys Docker Container Startup StackEngine

Ben covers web and technology giants such as Google, Amazon, and Microsoft and their impact on the cloud computing industry, whilst also writing about data centre players and their increasing importance in Europe. He also covers future technologies such as drones, aerospace, science, and the effect of technology on the environment.

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StackEngine acquisition will give Oracle the ability to offer Docker services as the cloud-newbie plays to catch up with rivals such as AWS

Oracle rather hush-hushly bought a Texan startup last Friday called StackEngine, a firm that develops management tools for Docker container services.

“On December 18, 2015 Oracle signed and closed an agreement to acquire StackEngine. All StackEngine employees will be joining Oracle as part of Oracle Public Cloud,” read an announcement on Oracle’s website.

Containers

The announcement, despite small and discreet, could actually rather big news for Oracle. Containers have exploded in popularity during 2015, and by bringing on board this support for Docker, Oracle can still attempt to play catch up with cloud rivals who have already adopted Docker technology and support, Microsoft and Amazon Web Services to name just two.

oracleStackEngine was only founded in 2014, with the company developing an admin later for container management. The purchase is indicative of Oracle’s bigger cloud game plan, which it took to overdrive in recent months.

Earlier in December, the copany reported that its cloud revenue overall was up 31 percent for the quarter at $649 million (£434m). Cloud software as a service (SaaS) and platform as a service (PaaS) revenues were $484 million (£323m), up 39 percent in constant currency.

The cloud figures come in contrast to the rest of Oracle’s earnings. Total on-premises software revenues were down 7 percent to $6.4 billion, total hardware revenues dived 16 percent to $1.1 billion (£740m), and total services revenues dipped 8 percent to $861 million (£575m).

But chairman Larry Ellison wants everyone to know his 39-year-old firm is leading the way to the transition to cloud.

“We are still on-target to sell and book more than $1.5 billion (£1bn) of new SaaS and PaaS business this fiscal year,” Ellison said on a conference call to analysts and journalists. “That is considerably more SaaS and PaaS new business than any other cloud services provider, including Salesforce.com.”

As 2015 comes to a close, Oracle is clearly looking forward to a cloud-heavy 2016 and we can be sure to expect more announcement like this in the near future.

The news of the StackEngine acquisition comes as Oracle announced it plans to build a new technology campus in Austin, Texas. The centre will be focused on cloud research, and said that its employee numbers in Austin will grow more than 50 percent in the coming years.

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