F5 to acquire NGINX in $670m deal

Storage area network

In a not-so-unexpected turn of the events NGINX will be acquired by F5, a company specializing in Application Delivery Networking, cloud services and networking components.

NGINX is the company behind the homonym open source web server. Since its inception the software has revolutionized the web server market once an Apache monopoly. With an impressive event-driven architecture, NGINX was born to address the C10K challenge. Nowadays Nginx is used on millions of web sites and it is commonly referred to as a little powerhouse that can tackle many kinds of problems.

About F5

F5 (NASDAQ: FFIV) gives the world’s largest businesses, service providers, governments, and consumer brands the freedom to securely deliver every app, anywhere—with confidence. F5 delivers cloud and security application services that enable organizations to embrace the infrastructure they choose without sacrificing speed and control.


NGINX, Inc. is the company behind the popular open source project trusted by more than 375 million sites. We offer a suite of technologies for developing and delivering modern applications. The NGINX Application Platform enables enterprises undergoing digital transformation to modernize legacy, monolithic applications as well as deliver new, microservices-based applications. Companies like Netflix, Starbucks, and McDonalds rely on NGINX to reduce costs, improve resiliency, and speed innovation. NGINX investors include Blue Cloud Ventures, e.ventures, Goldman Sachs, Index Ventures, MSD Capital, NEA, Runa Capital, and Telstra Ventures.

What does this mean for NGINX?

Although F5, reportedly, confirmed it is willing to maintain the open source nature of the NGINX project, on the Internet many people are doubtful. While not everyone is pessimistic about the deal, many people are comparing this deal to Red Hat acquisition. Here’s a few excerpts from Reddit and Hacker News.

With everything that is going on with open source licensing this certainly can create a bit of worry down the line.Interesting to also see what aws is doing in response to some of the more complicated licensing agreements and specifically elastic search: https://aws.amazon.com/blogs/opensource/keeping-open-source-…
The challenge for nginx was they raised VC capital so they were in a forcing function. Either grow revenue or get acquired. Could have remained an independent oss product for ever but alas no more. https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=19362466

Image courtesy of panumas nikomkai

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