Virtual Computing Environment, which is expanding in RTP with some 50 new jobs, on Thursday picked Praveen Akkiraju as its chief executive officer.

VCE, a joint venture of EMC and Cisco which launched in 2009, is on track to generate $1 billion in revenue this year in the growing “cloud computing” market. It is based in Richardson, Texas.

However, VCE does have a growing presence in RTP. VCE has disclosed plans to double its work force to some 100 people.

VMware and Intel also back VCE.

Akkiraju comes to VCE after a 19-year career at Cisco. He and President Frank Hauck also were named to the firm’s board of directors on Thursday.

“I am very excited about the opportunity to be part of a talented team that is defining the next generation of cloud computing,” said Akkiraju in a statement. “VCE’s growth and the market acceptance of its Vblock Systems have been remarkable. With a projected 50 billion dollar market opportunity over the next few years, VCE has the right technologies, partners, people and products to transform the economics, agility and profitability of our customers as they transition to cloud-enabled business models.”

At Cisco, Akkiraju most recently served as senior vice president and general manager of Cisco Services Routing Technology Group.

“VCE has been a pioneer in defining and accelerating the adoption of a converged infrastructure for cloud-based computing models, and is a key part of our cloud and data center strategy,” said John Chambers, Cisco’s chairman and CEO. “Praveen is an outstanding choice for the CEO, and is uniquely capable of accelerating product innovation, and helping VCE scale to capitalize on the opportunities ahead.”

Added Joe Tucci, chairman and CEO of EMC: “Cloud computing is rapidly transforming the IT landscape and creating unparalleled market opportunities. VCE has been an innovation leader since its inception in late 2009, delivering differentiated customer value that has fueled remarkable growth. We are adding to VCE’s management strength by appointing Praveen as CEO.”

VCE has some 1,200 employees.

Akkiraju earned a master’s in electrical engineering at Louisiana State University and is a Harvard Business School graduate.