5 Companies That Came To Win This Week

Amazon Reportedly Scores $600 Million Cloud Deal With CIA

Federal Computer Week, quoting unnamed sources, reported that Amazon has landed a 10-year, $600 million contract with the CIA that involves building a public cloud-like infrastructure that sits behind the agency's firewall, thereby ensuring that classified data is protected.

Both Amazon and the CIA aren't known for sharing information about internal business matters, so this deal will probably never be announced. If true, it would represent a shot across the bow of VMware, which has Amazon on the brain and is working feverishly to offer customers a safe public cloud alternative.

Fusion-io Buys ID7 In Software-Defined Storage Play

Fusion-io announced its acquisition of ID7, developer of the open source iSCSI target software used by a wide range of first- and second-tier vendors.

The deal would give Fusion-io control of the development of the open source SCST stack, and David Flynn, chairman and CEO of Fusion-io, said the company plans to continue supporting the open source community.

"The SCST stack is a default part of Linux," Flynn told CRN. "Anyone writing a storage operating system from Linux would contract with ID7 for commercial support. The SCST stack ships with Linux by default. But if you build storage systems, you generally use the commercial version. You don't want it to be buggy."

Big Data Startup MapR Lands $30 Million Funding Round

MapR Technologies, a big data startup focused on Hadoop, scored a $30 million venture capital round that brings its total funding to date to $59 million.

MapR Technologies plans to use the money to further its global expansion plans, especially in the Asia/Pacific region, and boost R&D. The startup extends Hadoop with system recovery, mirroring, multitenancy and advanced data management, among other features that are important to businesses.

New Sourcefire Certifications Aimed At Helping Partners

Sourcefire is reaching out to MSPs and other partners with new certifications that it says will help them sell additional support and management services. Aimed at sales engineers and other professional services employees, the certifications are centered on deployment, implementation and ongoing management of the Sourcefire appliance.

Classes and certification programs give partners a way to sell their own support and maintenance services, Sourcefire channel chief Chris Peterson told CRN. "By having certified resources, the opportunity is there for additional margin for the partner," said Peterson, who serves as senior vice president of worldwide channels, services and support.

Nutanix Brings In Former VAR Kaplan To Run Channels

Startup Nutanix hired longtime solution provider Steve Kaplan (pictured) as its new vice president of channels and strategic sales. Kaplan, previously vice president of virtualization and cloud computing at Presidio Networked Solutions, sees the move as a chance to gain greater exposure to disruptive technologies.

Nutanix develops technology that combines storage and virtual servers. "Every so often a disruptive technology comes around," Kaplan told CRN. "I based my career around that. Now we're here again with Nutanix. We're taking SAN-less compute and making it available for the masses."