The hunt by hosting services company, Rackspace, for a knight in shining armour with deep pockets continues while, in the meantime, the operation gets on with business.

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Toby Owen (pictured), the head of product strategy for the open cloud company, said the move to appoint a financial services company to assess its strategic options was quite common in the high tech industry and that it was business as usual. He said that the company would continue to compete in the same space as the massive Amazon by focusing on what it does well.

“Customer support has always been a key feature of Rackspace’s culture and we are looking to extend that into consultancy work where we wrap our expertise around the technology,” he said. One of the concepts was Devops-as-a-service he added.

“This is more than just services; this is partnering with the IT organisation, to be their development team,” although it may stop short of actually writing code. “The customer is in the best position to decide what they want to do, we will help them achieve that.”

In May the company announced that the financial services giant Morgan Stanley was helping to assess the company’s strategic options after it had been approached “several times in recent months by multiple parties” with interests ranging from partnership to acquisition.

One potential suitor, IBM, appears to have ruled itself out as a buyer after the head of Softlayer business Lance Crosby, said such an acquisition was “not exciting”. Speculation also surrounds the massive communications company CenturyLink which has been in an acquisitive frame of mind but is still swallowing two recently added businesses and the accompanying debt. Others in the frame include HP, Cisco, Dell, Equinix and possibly Amazon itself.

Rackspace has also just launched its OnMetal cloud servers which use its own Open Compute hardware operating with OpenStack, the open source platform it helped develop. There are three specialist types: processing power, storage capabilities and RAM intensive applications.