VMware To Acquire Mesh7 To Beef Up Cloud Security, Tanzu

“Developers and security teams will each gain a better understanding of when, where and how applications and microservices are communicating via APIs, even across multi-cloud environments, enabling better DevSecOps,” said VMware’s Tom Gillis.


VMware is acquiring cloud-based application security startup Mesh7 in a move to boost the company’s Kubernetes, micro-services and cloud-native capabilities, marking VMware’s first acquisition in 2021.

“The Mesh7 technology will enable VMware to bring visibility, discovery and better security to APIs,” said Tom Gillis, senior vice president and general manager of VMware’s Networking and Security business, in a blog post. “The integration of Mesh7’s contextual API behavior security solution with Tanzu Service Mesh will enable VMware to deliver high fidelity understanding of which applications components are talking to which using APIs. Developers and security teams will each gain a better understanding of when, where and how applications and microservices are communicating via APIs, even across multi-cloud environments, enabling better DevSecOps.”

Mesh7, named in CRN’s 20 Coolest Cloud Security Companies of 2020 list, provides a highly distributed micro API firewall with gateways to secure cloud-native applications and micro-services. The startup’s founders, Amit Jain and Pratik Roychowdhury, were both leading engineers at network giants Cisco Systems and Juniper Networks before launching Mesh7 in 2018.

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Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

The startup caught the attention of VMware through its approach of auto-discovering and auto-learning application behavior at the API layer to enable seamless collaboration between development, operations and security teams.

“The potential synergies are tremendous!” said Jain and Roychowdhury in a jointly authored blog post. “Mesh7 and VMware will work together to continue driving stronger and better security from development through run-time, and simplifying DevSecOps. VMware Tanzu Service Mesh along with Mesh7’s API Security Mesh will enable customers to more effectively deploy distributed services and application layer security for modern cloud applications.”

One important connection in the acquisition is that Mesh7’s observability platform is built on the open-source service mesh Envoy, designed for service-oriented architectures. VMware’s Tanzu Service Mesh offering is also built on Envoy, which provides security and connectivity for applications and micro-services across Kubernetes clusters and clouds.

“VMware is seeing increased demand for a fully integrated API + service mesh product with Envoy as the foundation,” said VMware’s Gillis. “Early on, VMware realized Envoy would become the platform for next-generation security services. … Tanzu Service Mesh controls the communication between thousands of application components, enforces security policy and measures performance and other critical functions, regardless of the underlying infrastructure.”

VMware is investing heavily on securing cloud-native applications and the microservices used to build them.

Mesh7 solutions will become an inherent part of VMware’s modern application platforms and solutions that will give IT teams a better understanding of API communications across multi-cloud environments with auto-created application layer security controls in run-time.

The purchase of Mesh7 marks VMware’s first acquisition since it bought SaltStack in October 2020 to boost its vRealize Suite of products as well as automation capabilities. The acquisition is expected to close later this year.

Last month VMware reported fiscal fourth quarter revenue of $3.3 billion, up 7 precent year over year. A big win came from soaring subscription and Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) sales, which hit $707 million, an increase of 27 percent year over year.

For all of its fiscal year 2021, which ended Jan. 29, 2021, VMware generated $11.8 billion in total revenue, representing a 9 percent increase compared to 2020. The company is currently searching for a new CEO after Pat Gelsinger left last month to become Intel’s CEO.