Inside Extreme Scale Tech|Friday, September 19, 2014
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Eight Enterprise Players Join Cloud Foundry Foundation 

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Eight new financial and technology companies have joined the Cloud Foundry Foundation, nearly doubling membership in the group that is promoting an open-source, platform-as-a-service (PaaS) for enterprise computing.

Pivotal Software, an enterprise PaaS provider coordinating the transition to the Cloud Foundry Foundation, announced the new members. They are: Accenture, BNY Mellon, Capgemini, Ericsson, GE, Intel, NTT, and Verizon.

They join existing members that include EMC, HP, IBM, Pivotal, Rackspace Hosting, SAP, and VMware, as well as founding “Gold” level members ActiveState and CenturyLink. A long list of global companies and institutions have signed licensing agreements to participate in Cloud Foundry, including Chinese telecommunications giant Huawei and Zhejiang University.

Pivotal said members have signed non-binding agreements to join the Foundation, which is expected to be formally launched in the fall of 2014.

Pivotal announced in February 2014 that it would relinquish control over the Cloud Foundry development project and shift control to a foundation. Since then it has announced groups of “platinum” and “gold” members.

Cloud Foundry aims to create an industry ecosystem and user community for open enterprise PaaS. “Through a broad ecosystem of partners, Cloud Foundry will enable the creation of modern applications and services from enterprise brands all over the world that will have a wide reaching impact,” Pivotal CEO Paul Maritz claimed in a statement.

Among the Foundation’s goals, said Ulf Ewaldsson, chief technology officer for Swedish telecommunications giant Ericsson, is building “a production platform for virtualized network functions and other workloads.”

The industry group also is promoting an open ecosystem approach based on developer frameworks and the delivery of application services. Cloud Foundry code is released under an Apache 2.0 license.

Technology companies are embracing the PaaS approach as a way to add value to existing cloud services. Cloud Foundry members said they are collaborating to ensure an open ecosystem as PaaS moves to the enterprise.

The group has established a ten-member advisory board. Over the past year, contributions to the Foundation have increased 113 percent. Members have contributed nearly 700,000 lines of software code, the group said.

Membership in Cloud Foundry appears to be diversifying as it attracts financial services and technology consulting firms as members. Suresh Kumar, CIO of investment management specialist BNY Mellon, stressed that the groups commitment to open standards would help expand enterprise cloud services.

Some Foundation members have already built PaaS offerings based on open-source approaches. Cloud Foundry is expected to compete against Red Hat’s OpenShift PaaS as well as proprietary services from Amazon, Google, and Microsoft.

Likewise, IT consulting firms like Capegemini said membership in the cloud group would, according to company CTO Lanny Cohen, assist it in helping clients “evolve and transform their application environments and then deploying to public, private and hybrid clouds of their choice.”

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