Akamai Technologies and Riverbed recently announced that they are joining forces on a platform designed to overcome overcome performance bottlenecks in public cloud service applications.  

The aim, the companies said, is to create the same local-like performance experience of private cloud applications in a public cloud environment. The offering is targeted primarily at software-as-a-service offerings like Microsoft Office 365, Salesforce.com and NetSuite.

Through the collaboration, Riverbed will integrate its Akamai Internet optimization software directly onto Riverbed Steelhead servers that live in enterprise data centers, extending the edge of the Akamai footprint to the enterprise data center. In addition, Akamai will integrate Riverbed Steelhead technology into the Akamai edge platform, extending the customers’ Steelhead footprint up to the SaaS provider.

In a blog post, (and in a video from Interop) Riverbed VP of product marketing Apurva Dave’ further explains the collaboration and the reasons behind it:

SaaS is becoming more and more important to businesses, but enteprises have a distinct lack of control in terms of distance (where the cloud data center is located), data (how much of it is required to go back and forth over long distances), and access (bandwidth, efficient routing, and even access to the DC itself to place performance optimization technologies). Customers needed a new way to accelerate SaaS applications that would address private WAN performance, Internet performance, and operate across manySaaS applications without access to the SaaS data center itself. There’s more to this partnership than just a logo exchange - there’s real technology integration going on behind the scenes.

The companies expect to roll out the offering in 2012.