Cisco is making a major move in its strategic shift to becoming more focused on software networking solutions by acquiring a startup, Viptela, that a team of Cisco engineers left the tech giant to start in 2012.

The deal provides “Cisco a quick score in the SD-WAN game,” noted tech news site CRN.

SDN, or software-defined networking, is all the rage in management tools for wide-area networks, or WAN. The acquisition is part of  “Cisco’s strategic transition toward software-centric solutions that deliver predictable, recurring revenue,” Cisco noted.

The deal, announced late Monday, will cost Cisco $610 million.

Viptela had already raised more than $110 million from investors.

“Viptela’s technology is cloud-first, with a focus on simplicity and ease of deployment while simultaneously providing a rich set of capabilities and scale. These principles are what today’s customers demand,” said Scott Harrell, senior vice president of product management for the Cisco Enterprise Networking Group, said in the deal announcement. 

“With Viptela and Cisco, we will be able to deliver a comprehensive portfolio of comprehensive on-premises, hybrid, and cloud-based SD-WAN solutions.”

  • VIDEO: Cisco explains SDN at

The deal further means Cisco will “accelerate the path to developing next generation SD-WAN solutions, by combining Viptela’s cloud first network management, orchestration and overlay technologies with industry-leading routing platforms, services, and SD-WAN capabilities from Cisco,” the company said.

It’s the second acquisition Cisco has made this year. In January, Cisco bought AppDynamics, an application performance management solutions company, for $3.7 billion.

Cisco (Nasdaq: CSCO) operates one of its largest corporate campuses in RTP.

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