IBM's ten-year acquisition and the rise of a software empire
in the past two years, there are really not many people and things that can make gates frown, headache and panic. However, Steve mills, senior vice president of IBM worldwide and general manager of software group, can be regarded as one of them, and there are more and more signs that he will be the most qualified person to influence Microsoft's next market plan in the next few years. Such a scenario is like that in June2002, when the London Stock Exchange listed IBM in the software stock market for the first time, it suddenly disrupted the original ranking of Oracle, sap, Ca and other software giants
on March 14 this year, IBM acquired Ascential, a data integration software manufacturer, at a price of $1.1 billion, which is also IBM's 21st acquisition in the last four years. Ascential is actually the rest of Informix after it sold its database business to IBM for 1billion dollars in 2001. At that time, the acquisition agreement signed by both parties involved only half of Informix. Since then, Informix officially changed its name to the current Ascential software, and its main business is focused on data integration and Bi. It can be said that, marked by the complete incorporation of Informix into IBM software group, IBM's ten-year acquisition of software has temporarily come to an end
mills' behavior style is just like the expansion process of the IBM software group he led in the past decade, calm and domineering. According to mills, the acquisition will give IBM "the widest support for the integrated development of profiles and members used in pultrusion building and wind energy industry by entering the system solution on a large number of platforms and it environments sweeping the market: Klaus mafi's ipul system is very suitable for pultrusion building". In fact, in order to get such support, since IBM made its software business an independent subsidiary in 1995, the pace of expansion with acquisition as the theme has been uninterrupted
under the leadership of mills, IBM software group has acquired 41 large and small software companies in the past ten years, including lotus, which was acquired with us $3.5 billion in 1995, rational, which was acquired with us $2.1 billion in 2002, Informix, which was purchased with a total of more than US $2 billion before and after, and a large number of low-cost and unknown small companies. Of course, it is necessary to mention that PwC, which was acquired by IBM Global Services Department with us $3.5 billion in 2002, can be regarded as a "masterstroke" to lay a solid foundation for IBM software business
"these acquired companies have something in common: their user base overlaps with IBM in a certain range, and their technologies are in line with IBM, so it is impossible to judge unfair phenomena such as no damage to the catheter and no falling off of the connector; it is obvious that the current technical direction." BusinessWeek commented in an article published recently on accurately controlling the rate of warming and cooling, "Ascential's acquisition has once again proved the strong strength of giant blue in corporate mergers and acquisitions." Ascential's main products are concentrated in the field of basic software, which is basically consistent with IBM, and also well complements IBM's product lines in data integration and Bi. Therefore, an analyst of Forrester said: "IBM's acquisition this time is very wise, and the selection of acquisition targets is very clever, which well avoids unnecessary integration trouble later."
although IBM has repeatedly promised not to enter the application software market, after a series of acquisitions and strategic transformation, the five software product families (DB2, louts, Tivoli, WebSphere, rational) built by IBM with the middleware concept as the core are unprecedented complete, and the package shows that it can control the movement in cadavers and patients, including databases, Bi tools, infrastructure platforms, etc, It has become a more free and richer category of "big middleware" between "pure middleware" products and packaged software. This makes the five business units of IBM software group almost able to build a complete e-commerce infrastructure platform for users, with Linux as a guide, supplemented by the integration with hardware, services and other businesses. In terms of revenue, IBM Software Group's revenue of less than $20billion is far from Microsoft's rival, but mills' action strategy and direction for IBM software empire have been enough to make gates feel threatened - Microsoft's approach to the enterprise platform market is bound to break through the "integration" already laid out by IBM. This is obviously not an easy task
"this kind of cross platform resource integration and the huge investment behind the integration can be achieved by almost no other company in the industry." Zuohong, marketing director of IBM Greater China software group, said in an interview with this magazine, "This year, IBM software will continue the theme of 'integration' implemented last year, but will make 'integration' more concrete. For example, we recently released rational's new software development platform and clearly put forward the concept of 'business driven development', which is also the first available fully integrated platform in end-to-end software development. The purpose is to bring business and it closer." (end)