Splunk To Acquire Network Monitoring Tech Startup Flowmill

Big data company Splunk will add Flowmill’s network performance monitoring technology to its Observability Suite as the company accelerates its push into IT system monitoring and DevOps.


Big data company Splunk has struck a deal to acquire network performance monitoring (NPM) technology developer Flowmill in a move that will expand the capabilities of the Splunk Observability platform.

The move, announced Tuesday, comes little more than a month after Splunk unveiled its Observability Suite line of monitoring software for IT operations and DevOps teams – an area the company has identified as one of its core businesses.

Splunk, based in San Francisco, did not disclose terms of the acquisition, which the company expects to complete by the end of its fiscal 2021 fourth quarter in January.

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[Related: Splunk Debuts Observability Suite, Acquires Pair Of Monitoring Tool Startups]

Splunk, which operates with the tagline “data-to-everything,” develops a portfolio of software used to collect, index and analyze machine-generated data for a range of tasks in IT operations, IT security, DevOps and more.

The Splunk Observability Suite is based on technology from Splunk’s 2019 acquisitions of cloud infrastructure monitoring tech provider SignalFx and application monitoring trace analytics tech startup Omnition.

In October, at its virtual .conf20 conference, Splunk announced acquisition deals for Plumbr, an Estonia-based developer of application performance monitoring (APM) tools, and Rigor, an Atlanta-based provider of digital experience monitoring software. Technology from the two acquisitions is also being incorporated into the Observability Suite.

Splunk said the addition of Flowmill and its network performance monitoring capabilities will complement the Plumbr and Rigor acquisitions.

Flowmill, based in Palo Alto, Calif., was founded in 2016. The company’s software is used to help IT managers gain visibility into the behavior of distributed applications in containers, within virtual machines and on bare metal. It can help detect cloud infrastructure problems, analyze application interactions and reduce network transfer costs.

“Observability technology is rapidly increasing in both sophistication and ability to help organizations revolutionize how they monitor their infrastructure and applications. Flowmill’s innovative NPM solution provides real-time observability into network behavior and performance of distributed cloud applications,” said Tim Tully, Splunk chief technology officer, in a statement announcing the acquisition.

“We’re excited to bring Flowmill’s visionary NPM technology into our Observability Suite as Splunk continues to deliver best-in-class observability capabilities to our customers,” Tully said.

Tully said Flowmill’s software leverages extended Berkeley Packet Filter (eBPF) technologies, which Splunk described as “a valuable, underutilized data source that is encountered in all cloud-native use cases and much easier to access than traditional networking data.”

Splunk said eBPF is “a critical component for full-stack observability” and “enables broad visibility into interactions between applications, networks and other infrastructure elements.”

“Flowmill’s approach to building systems that support full-fidelity, real-time, high-cardinality ingestions and analysis aligns well with Splunk’s vision for observability,” said Jonathan Perry, Flowmill founder and CEO, in a statement. “We’re thrilled to join Splunk and bring eBPF, next-generation NPM to the Splunk Observability Suite.”