Following the announcement in August that it intended to buy UK-based i2, IBM has announced that the deal has officially gone through and that i2 will now be incorporated into the analytics division of IBM.
The deal fits in with IBM's well-established business strategy of providing Big Data analytics and intelligence for large cities and public organizations, a strategy better known as its "Smarter Cities" initiative.
IBM and Analytics
But in light of the announcement earlier this week that it was expanding its security division with the acquisition of Q1 Labs and that it has put aside a little war chest with a view to building that division, it is now possible to see that analytics is not just products and services for IBM.
Analytics is a foundation upon which it appears to be building a commercial strategy across all product categories.
The Q1 Labs product is a good example; Q1 Labs’ advanced analytics and correlation capabilities can detect and flag actions across an enterprise that deviate from prescribed policies and typical behavior to help prevent breaches, such as an employee gaining access to unauthorized information, and it’s also part of the security division.
Combine that with i2’s analytics for crime prevention and detection in Smarter Cities and you get two product sets in IBM joined together by the common factor of analytics.
IBM and i2
But that’s just by way of an aside. Like most of these deals, IBM hasn’t revealed how much it paid for i2, but it bought i2 from Silver Lake Sumeru, which had acquired i2 from ChoicePoint in 2008 for US$ 185 million.
Already i2 has a presence across 150 countries, including eight of the world's 10 largest companies, offering private and public sector organizations ways of tapping into vast quantities of information and derive intelligence from multiple sources to anticipate threats, generate leads and securely share information.
It offers ways of associating seemingly unrelated pieces of information to work in both structured and unstructured data sources like social media, biometrics and, of course, for "Smarter Cities," criminal databases.
The result is that 4,500 global customers use i2 technology offerings, including the U.S. Army, the Los Angeles Sheriff's Department and the majority of the police forces in the U.K.
The 350 i2 employees will now join IBM, which will continue to support i2's clients and give them access to the broader IBM portfolio.