Computer networking equipment giant Cisco Systems Inc. announced its intention to buy privately-held software company newScale Inc., a provider of self-service management software for enterprise IT and cloud computing. This move will help Cisco to expand its offerings in cloud computing.

Based in San Mateo in the U.S. state of California, newScale provides software that delivers a service catalog and self-service portal for information technology (IT) organizations to select and quickly deploy cloud services within their businesses.

Founded in 1999, the company now has more than two million users worldwide, including 20 percent of the Fortune 50 companies, according to information posted on newScale’s website.

NewScale’s portals allow enterprise customers to initiate the provisioning of their own systems and infrastructure on an as-needed basis. Cisco intends to apply that methodology to cloud computing. Similar to Amazon Web Services (AWS), the Cisco-NewScale pairing would allow customers to build, provision and expand their own private cloud infrastructure on an as-needed basis based on standardised service options.

“Cloud computing represents a major shift in the evolution of the internet, and as more customers migrate from traditional IT infrastructures, the need for rapid self-provisioning and efficient management becomes increasingly critical,” said Parvesh Sethi, senior vice president of Cisco, in a statement.

Financial terms of the deal were undisclosed. Cisco said the deal would be completed in the second half of its fiscal year 2011.