Oracle just bought a tiny Austin, Texas startup called StackEngine, according to documents Oracle filed with the SEC.
StackEngine just publicly announced the purchase on its home page, too.
The SEC filing doesn’t say how much Oracle paid for the startup. It was founded in 2014 and had raised $4.5 million. The documents do indicate that Oracle has paid roughly $1.3 million to take over employees’ stock options and equity awards. It looks like StackEngine employs five people, according to its “team” page.
StackEngine is a startup focused on the whole Docker/container craze. Docker is a really hot cloud computing startup that zoomed to unicorn status less than five years from being founded and only a couple of years after its famed product was launched.
Docker makes something called a “container.” It allows a developer to configure all the things needed to run the application on the cloud, how the server, storage, memory should be set up. And then when the developer sends the app to the cloud, it sends it to a Docker container running on a cloud, and all that stuff just works, no troubleshooting.
StackEngine makes a system that lets IT departments track and manage all their Docker containers, across all developers, all applications.
Oracle is getting into cloud computing in a big way. It has been mostly focused on selling its own database, HR and finance applications as cloud solutions. But it has expanded into offering a cloud that lets developers run apps. And most recently, wants to take Amazon on head-on, with a cloud that lets developers and IT departments just rent storage and computers. Support for the whole container thing is a must in that kind of cloud.
All the big cloud companies support Docker and some of them, like Google, have created their own competing containers, too.
It’s unclear what Oracle plans to do with the technology, or if this was more of an acqui-hire (which Oracle has been known to do, too). Cloud and container talent is hard to find these days.
We’ve reached out to both companies for comment and will update when we hear back.
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