Red Hat and Exadel are joining forces to try to make the open source Red Hat platform more of a destination for software developers.
The two companies will offer Eclipse-based developer tools for building applications for Red Hat Enterprise Linux and JBoss Enterprise Middleware, Red Hat and Exadel say.
"If you take a look at where Red Hat's business was a couple years ago, it was primarily around migration of production systems to Enterprise Linux," says Brian Che, Red Hat product manager. But now, Red Hat wants developers to build new applications, Che says. This week's announcement follows last year's purchase of JBoss as part of Red Hat's strategy.
Also, Exadel's Ajax4jsf, which is a framework for JavaServer Faces applications that use AJAX, will be consolidated under the JBoss.org umbrella. Red Hat will work with Exadel to drive development of these projects and integrate them with JBoss middleware technologies such as the JBoss Seam application framework.
In offering its products via open source, Exadel is seeking to increase awareness of its technologies and sell application-building services around them. "We believe that this gives us more visibility," says Donna Burke, Exadel vice president. Red Hat, meanwhile, will support the products itself.
The Red Hat and Exadel arrangement provides a new twist on partnerships in that it is not an acquisition and provides just a potential for future revenues from services, says Raven Zachary, senior analyst with The 451 Group.
"Here you've got two commercial firms exchanging IP (intellectual property) with only a promise of revenue-sharing in the future. It's a fascinating model," Zachary says.
"There's a risk here for Exadel," in giving away its IP, but Exadel believes the move provides greater opportunities, Zachary says.