VMware to acquire AI, ML acceleration firm Bitfusion

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VMware to acquire AI, ML acceleration firm Bitfusion

VMware has revealed plans to acquire Bitfusion for an undisclosed amount, with the goal of supporting AI and machine learning-based workloads by virtualising hardware accelerators.

US-based Bitfusion’s software platform virtualises hardware accelerators for applications like virtualised GPUs, FPGAs (field-programmable gate arrays) and ASICs (application-specific integrated circuits).

Put simply, Bitfusion’s platform can decouple compute resources from the services they’re attached to and share them across a network, whether on-premises or in a hybrid cloud environment. This in turn allows users to support their AI and ML-based workloads by sharing GPU capacity across virtualised infrastructure as a “pool of network-accessible resource” rather than isolating resources on a server.

While Bitfusion has a strong focus on virtualised GPUs, VMware said the platform can extend to support FPGAs and ASICs as well.

“In many ways, Bitfusion offers for hardware acceleration what VMware offered to the compute landscape several years ago,” said VMware senior vice president and general manager, cloud platform business unit Krish Prasad.

“Bitfusion also aligns well with VMware’s ‘Any Cloud, Any App, Any Device’ vision with its ability to work across AI frameworks, clouds, networks, and formats such as virtual machines and containers.”

Once the acquisition clears, VMware plans to integrate Bitfusion into its vSphere server virtualisation platform.

We look forward to welcoming the team from Bitfusion to VMware and working with them to help us deliver a cloud operational model to an emerging part of the data center as well as bridge the gap between the traditional CPU-only infrastructure and infrastructure featuring hardware acceleration technologies,” added Prasad.

Bitfusion marks VMware’s fourth major acquisition this year, having acquired remote device management vendor AetherPal, application packager Bitnami and startup Avi Networks last month.

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