Citrix Sees the Light, Buys Reflectent

Citrix expanded its product portfolio with the acquisition of Reflectent Software. Terms of the deal, announced today, were not disclosed.

The acquisition was a natural fit, according to Lou Shipley, Reflectent’s president and CEO. Reflectant’s EdgeSite monitoring software had already been designed for Citrix Presentation Server, and, Shipley told the two companies were already in discussions to have Citrix OEM EdgeSite. Those discussions led to the outright purchase decision.

Reflectent is a leading provider of application performance monitoring, part of a larger market for access management solutions designed to complement traditional systems management products. Access management products focus specifically on what’s known as “the first mile of computing,” or the distance between the user’s computer and the data center. Basically, these products observe, measure and control the access experience from the end user’s perspective.

“From Citrix’s perspective, this is a strategic acquisition,” said Shipley. “Today we’re about application performance, but that’s just the beginning. Over time, we’ll be getting into other areas like capacity planning, security, and usage metrics.”

Reflectant also has marketing and product integration partnerships with IBM, Microsoft and HP, which Shipley said Citrix will continue.

As part of the acquisition, Shipley now heads up a new management systems division made up of all 31 former Reflectent employees and based at the company’s Westford, MA facility. Citrix is based in Fort Lauderdale, FL.

While there are other monitoring products, Reflectent carved out an early lead last year with its ability to monitor within the enterprise network, Scott Crawford, analyst with Enterprise Management Associates, told “Citrix wasn’t really covered in this area. When you had a support issue, there weren’t a lot of tools to address performance concerns.”

While Reflectant’s EdgeSight software monitors desktop performance today, Crawford thinks Citrix sees its potential to be applied more broadly to CRM and ERP systems. “Anything where you need to monitor performance from an end user’s perspective, that’s where EdgeSight is really good at pinpointing problems,” he said.

Last year Citrix made a major move in the performance area when it acquired San Jose-based NetScaler for $300 million in cash and stock. NetScaler develops application networking acceleration products that are widely used among Fortune 500 customers, including Google, Amazon, E*Trade and EarthLink.

“This is another exciting acquisition for Citrix,” said CEO Mark Templeton in a statement. “With Reflectent’s products and expertise, we’re taking the next step in enabling IT services to be provided on a utility model—much like telco services, where the dial-tone is always there, operator assistance is easy, and bills are accurate.”

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