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Cisco’s Acquisition of AppDynamics

Avi Freedman
Avi FreedmanCo-founder & CEO
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Cisco’s late-January acquisition of AppDynamics confirms what was already evident from Kentik’s experience in 2016, which is that effective visibility is now recognized industry-wide as a critical requirement for success. AppDynamics provides APM, the full value of which can’t be realized without the modern NPM offered by Kentik Detect. In this post we look at how Kentik uniquely complements APM to provide a comprehensive visibility solution.

Why Industry Validation of APM Makes Us ‘Appy


Six months ago Cisco made a big-time splash in the network analytics pool with the introduction of Tetration Analytics. Now, with the late-January announcement of its $3.7 Billion acquisition of AppDynamics, Cisco has made another blockbuster analytics-related move. On top of feeling happy for our friends at AppDynamics, we’re also very excited about what this means for our space! Coming off of a great 2016 at Kentik, we’re more confident than ever that Web, enterprise, and service-provider organizations are deeply hungry for the kind of network traffic intelligence offered by Kentik Detect. And it’s obvious that the major players have picked up on this hunger.

Without modern NPM, the full value of APM remains unrealized.

Our excitement is based on more than just general good vibes in the industry. AppDynamics performs application performance management (APM), and it’s widely acknowledged that the full value of APM can’t be realized unless it’s paired with a modern take on Network Performance Management (NPM). Industry analysts at EMA have found that the top two root causes of difficult-to-troubleshoot IT/app performance issues are network config changes and network performance/congestion. Unfortunately, legacy NetFlow analysis tools and NPM appliances are siloed, they can’t store enough traffic data, and they don’t deploy well in cloud and distributed app environments. As a result, traditional NPM tools don’t provide the visibility that engineers need to determine if problems originate in the network and, if so, what is the root cause.

That’s where Kentik comes in.

Network infrastructure generates massive volumes of valuable metadata about the traffic across your network, including flow records (e.g. NetFlow, sFlow, IPFIX), BGP, GeoIP, and SNMP. Kentik Detect unlocks the value of that data by collecting it into a unified time-series database, making it available in real time for anomaly detection and alerting, and storing it unsummarized for months to enable fast, super-powerful analytics. With our cloud-, container-, and microservices-friendly NPM host agent, key network performance metrics are pervasively and contextually measured from packet capture and integrated into the time series with data from the rest of your infrastructure.


Kentik Detect also has the industry’s most accurate anomaly detection system, which baselines large, adaptive sets of individual host IPs keyed to custom multi-dimensional criteria. The system can trigger alarms based on a nearly infinite variety of conditions involving metrics such as performance, traffic, or even unique source and destination IP. Engineers who subscribe to notifications about anomalies and threats can click through to contextual dashboard views and rapidly drill down in a full, ad-hoc data explorer. They can then pivot metrics and analytical dimensions to explore performance, traffic congestion, and even DDoS attacks. There’s gold in your network data, and Kentik Detect uncovers it.

APM Needs NPM, NPM Needs Kentik

When Cisco invests in APM we see a Kentik-sized hole in their product line-up.

Through our customers we know a great deal about the demand for effective, comprehensive network visibility — and how the promise of APM can’t be fully realized without it. So when we see Cisco investing in an APM vendor we see a big, Kentik-sized hole in their product line-up (and that of many other vendors to boot).

Speaking of customer demand, we’re busy meeting the market’s need for highly scalable, granular, real-time network visibility, which Kentik can uniquely provide. Among our highlights in 2016:

  • Our annual recurring revenue grew nearly 6x.
  • Our innovative big data SaaS earned recognition from Gartner, IDC, and Forrester.
  • We landed a top-five cloud provider, multiple Tier 1 ISPs, a globally-known telecom provider in Asia, and major CDN providers.
  • Other new customers include SMBs, Web enterprise giants, financial services companies, institutions of higher learning, and other kinds of enterprises and organizations.

Looking ahead, 2017 is also promising to be very exciting for us as we grow our team and our business rapidly. Yes, we’re (h)appy, not just because of the AppDynamics acquisition, but because we’re able to fill a real need for customers, the same need that we felt ourselves when we were running networks.

Are you ready to see how Kentik can provide you with better network visibility? Start a free trial today and you can be up and running in just fifteen minutes.

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