CloudBees salutes feature flagging with Rollout buy

Cloudbees

CloudBees has pulled in Rollout, an Israel-based feature flag service, in a move that broadens the features it can offer its users, and extends its reach along the software development pipeline

The buy is CloudBees’ third acquisition over the last 18 months. It reeled in CI/CD vendor CodeShip back in February 2018, and CD/RA veteran Electric Cloud back in April.

Israel-based Rollout, sells a feature flag and toggles management platform, with a particular focus on mobile applications. This includes feature management, rollout/rollback and feature analytics.

CloudBees CEO Sasha Labourey said Electric Cloud’s platform includes features such as redeploy, blue/green and roll back. “However, they don’t do feature flagging.”

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“We like feature flagging…It doesn’t just connect us to production. It connects us beyond production,” he explained. “We get to listen to the signals post production, and impact code and behaviours.”

Rollout can expect to be rolled into CloudBees quite quickly. Electric Cloud execs already have shiny new CloudBees job titles. At the same time, customers will still be able to buy Rollout.IO as a standalone product.

“Electric Cloud joined us at a time when we’re working on the next iteration of our platform, our SDM (Software Delivery Management) vision,” said Labourey. “They come at a perfect point. What’s frustrating is to force a company into what you’ve built to date.”

“There’s an intermediary path where those products work together,” he continued. “Down the road, the idea is for CloudBees to have a much more simplified offering where you have all the bricks but consume CloudBees as one thing.”

He said a combined SDM product would be demoed in August at Jenkins World. “It’s going to have a limited availability. It doesn’t mean beta.”

“We’ll apply GA once all of our existing customers with all their existing use cases can migrate to this release,” he said. “So  we’re going to increasingly provide limited availability releases over time. End of this year, early next we’re going to call it GA.”

There has been a rash of acquisitions in the software development and delivery space over the last six months, sometimes representing large companies fleshing out their product lineup, sometimes representing startups running out of investor patience.

Labourey said “If the opportunity arrives we jump on it. It’s not like we have huge gaps and a great sense of urgency to fill them…As a vendor we’re…competing against other vendors that want to have a bigger offering. We’re not trying to compete against another feature flagging company.”

But, from the customers’ point of view, he said, “buyers have less and less patience as maturity comes to buy individual features and maintain the integration.”

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