Cisco buys U.K.-based software specialist Ensoft

Cisco is adding more software expertise to the fold with a deal to buy Ensoft. (Monica Alleven/FierceWireless)

Cisco is adding more software engineers to its roster with today's news that it is buying U.K.-based Ensoft for an undisclosed sum.

Privately held Ensoft, which is headquartered in Harpenden, England, provides software solutions for service provider networks. Cisco said in a blog post the acquisition will “further our commitment to simplify service provider networks through automation and programmability.”

According to a story by Computer Business Review, Ensoft develops IOS XR—the distributed carrier-class software that fuels Cisco’s highest end multiterabit routers—features for Cisco, and will continue to support networking software offered through Cisco. Ensoft has about 70 software engineers specializing in networking software.

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Ensoft's employees will join Cisco’s Service Provider Networking Group, which is led by Senior Vice President and General Manager Sumeet Arora.

“Cisco’s networking software strategy is centered on enabling simplified, scalable, trusted, and automatable IP network infrastructure," said Cisco’s Rob Salvagno, head of the company’s M&A and venture investment team, in a blog today. "Acquiring the Ensoft team accelerates this strategy and strengthens our commitment to our service provider customers.

"Cisco has developed the Cisco IOS XR operating system for service provider routing systems, which offers rich IP networking innovation across a variety of devices and form factors from a single code base. Ensoft brings a strong talent pipeline to Cisco, adding a high-performance team to augment Cisco’s ongoing innovation in networking software."

Cisco is making the move from hardware-based revenues to software and subscription-based revenues. Buying a company that is chock-full of software engineers that work on service provider solutions looks to be a good move for the tech giant.

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In its most recent earnings report, Cisco's service provider orders increased by 2% while the company reported higher than expected revenue of $13.1 billion.

The deal is slated to close in the second quarter of next year.