The typical cycle for these kind of products, which mirrors what we’ve seen with projects like Kubernetes or OpenStack, is that a few companies will back the open-source efforts and others will start to offer commercial services and distributions around it. We’re seeing the same play out with Spinnaker.
One of the first companies to offer support for it was Armory.io and today, Mirantis is joining in as well. While Mirantis started out as an OpenStack specialist, the company has added other managed cloud services over time and is currently in the process of refocusing many of its activities on application delivery — and at the core of that is now the Spinnaker project.
“We spent probably a good 18 months kind of pathfinding in the application space to figure out what the proper angle was going to be and where to invest our fairly scarce resources,” Mirantis co-founder and CMO Boris Renski explained to me. The result of this is the beta launch of the Mirantis Application Platform today.
The team already had a lot of expertise in the infrastructure space, but Renski believes that to truly succeed — and provide real value to enterprises — it had to go beyond infrastructure tools like Docker and Kubernetes to deliver value to enterprises. In the end, the company decided that Spinnaker would be the way to go. Spinnaker’s backing by major tech companies like Netflix and Google surely helped, but it also helped that the tools can sit on top of virtually any cloud or on-premise environment, and that it’s meant to be very open and pluggable.
Mirantis CEO Adrian Ionel mirrored this assessment in a statement today. “While it’s easy to start using public cloud and get immediate benefits as a small team, getting ROI from cloud for a large enterprise requires streamlining the various processes, tools and security requirements across a diverse set of engineering silos,” he wrote. “Mirantis Application Platform aims to address this challenge, enabling enterprises to maximize cloud ROI at scale through cloud native continuous delivery.”
In practice, enterprises that work with Mirantis will get a number of services through the Application Platform. Mirantis will install, configure and manage a dedicated Application Platform instance with Spinnaker, Jenkins, Gerrit and Terraform running on any private of public cloud. It’ll integrate this instance with a company’s identity provider and continuous integration system of choice, as well as compliance scanners and tools like Slack (because without a Slack integration, any tool is pretty much dead in the water these days, right?). Mirantis will then work with the enterprise to deploy and support one starter application. That starter application is meant to create a blueprint for the overall delivery pipeline that the enterprise can then use to deploy new applications going forward.
This approach mirrors Mirantis’ take on delivering its OpenStack and Kubernetes solutions.
Mirantis’ current customers include the likes of Adobe, AT&T, State Farm, Vodafone, Volkswagen and Wells Fargo. Renski couldn’t disclose which of its customers are in the beta program for its Application Platform, but he did note the company currently has about a dozen beta deployments in progress.