IBM Adds Two Companies, Expands Analytics Reach, Builds Mobile Software Portfolio

3 minute read
David Roe avatar

IBM is spending like there’s no tomorrow. Two more companies have just landed in its net, both of which willgrow its analytics business on one hand – particularly its Smart Commerce drive – and on the other hand its mobile communications strategy.

The first deal, which IBM has just completed, is Emptoris, which will add analytics in the cloud to its procurements and supply chain operations for Smarter Commerce.

IBM Acquisitions

The second deal, which was just announced this week, is acquisition of Worklight, an Israeli provider of mobile software for smart phones and tablets, and which will probably close at the end of this quarter.

In neither case did Big Blue mention the price being paid, which means that it will probably not take a huge chunk out of the US$ 18 billion purse that the company said it was eager to empty by 2015 at a recent conference call on earnings.

IBM and Emptoris

In both cases, too, IBM has tapped into business streams that are growing quickly. Smarter Commerce enables companies that are working in rapidly changing markets to adapt their technologies and business methods in response.

The key word in this respect is "agility" and IBM is offering companies the ability to detect even slight shifts in customer sentiment by applying analytics to all their business dealings.

While the application of analytics to this particular area may appear limited, it is just one part of its Smarter Commerce initiative that fits in nicely with its Smarter…well, smarter "everything," which aims to apply cutting-edge technologies -- particularly analytics -- to all aspects of public life.

Emptoris’ solutions supplement the existing B2B integration and supply chain management capabilities IBM acquired through the purchase of Sterling Commerce in 2010.

Learning Opportunities

With the closing of this acquisition, approximately 725 Emptoris employees will join IBM's software group, which is a key driver of growth and profitability for the company.

IBM and Mobile

Meanwhile, the Worklight acquisition, which as announced at the beginning of the week, will see it developing mobile application development, integration, security and mobile management.

As we saw earlier,  Worklight will become an important piece of IBM's mobility strategy by offering an open platform that helps speed the delivery of existing and new mobile applications to multiple devices.

While IBM would not normally be associated with mobiles and mobile applications, it says it has been steadily investing in this space for more than a decade, both organically and through acquisitions.

Once the deal is closed at the end of this quarter, the company will be incorporated into its software group.