Cisco to Buy Cloud Computing Firm Meraki for $1.2 Billion

Over the weekend, Cisco Systems (Nasdaq: CSCO  ) announced a second big acquisition in the cloud computing space. On Sunday, it announced plans to spend $1.2 billion to acquire San Francisco-based Meraki, a provider of midmarket software for managing Wi-Fi, switching, security and mobile devices from the cloud. This follows Cisco's announcement Thursday that it plans to acquire Cloupia, a Santa Clara, Calif.-based designer of software for managing data centers, for $125 million.

"Meraki's solution was built from the ground up optimized for cloud, with tremendous scale, and is already in use by thousands of customers to manage hundreds of thousands of devices," said Cisco in a statement. The company was originally founded by members of MIT's Laboratory for Computer Science in 2006, and had been preparing for an IPO of its own before receiving Cisco's offer.

Cisco said it will pay for the company in cash, including paying incentives to retain key employees of Meraki. The acquisition is expected to close in the next few months. Once integrated into the company, Meraki will form the core of Cisco's new Cloud Networking Group..

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