IBM Snatches Up Companies Left & Right
IBM announced two acquisitions: source code and application security company Ounce Labs, and SPSS, a provider of predictive analytics. Both purchases arrive on the heels of IBM picking up the privately-held Exeros in May.
Downturn or not, IBM isn't picking these companies up on the cheap. SPSS — a publicly traded firm — was bought for $1.2 billion, which breaks down to an all-time high of $50 a share. With others by Intel and Oracle as well, the recent flush of acquisitions shows things are picking up for the software sector.
SPSS, whose primary business is predictive analytics, will become a part of the Information Management division of Big Blue. Their software has some overlap with the Business Analytics and Optimization (BAO) consulting service. But in a statement on the acquisition today, IBM said they see SPSS as being an extension of their Information On Demand strategy.
Ounce Labs is a private company, so financial details on this second acquisition are not being released. Ounce does testing on application source, aimed at detecting flaws that might compromise security and compliance. The company will be absorbed in to IBM's Rational software business, which manages enterprise architecture.
Software Acquisitions Looking Up?
The price SPSS garnered is not a particularly shocking revelation, since IBM envisions selling their service to industries such as financial services, health care, and crime prevention in the public sector. But these pair of announcements are just part of a slew of recent mergers, like the Oracle and Sun deal that was recently approved by shareholders, that signal a boost in the prospects for getting acquired if you're in software.