Wheeling and dealing

Hardly a surprise, restructuring of the global tech industry continued with some of the industry's biggest players falling victim to the consolidation trend.

Megamergers were the talk of the town in 2005 as colossal IT vendors, such as Sun and Oracle, gobbled up rivals in massive billion-dollar deals.

Many embarked on acquisition sprees to expand their technology portfolio and customer base, as healthy double- and triple-digit growth rates and sales margins are harder to achieve today, particularly with the industry getting larger, analysts say.

With discount pricing pressures felt in nearly every corner of the tech sector, the powerhouses have a better chance of spreading out their costs and maintaining healthier sales margins.

Symantec and Lenovo started the ball rolling in December 2004 with the acquisitions of Veritas Software and IBM's PC unit respectively.

One of the earlier billion-dollar deals to kick off this year was Adobe's purchase of Macromedia for US$3.4 billion. The companies said the all-stock deal was designed to create a better-stocked source of tools for building and distributing multimedia content across a range of operating systems and devices.

Web software developers and designers, however, expressed both apprehension and optimism over the buy.

In a bold move to add market heft, Sun in June announced that it was acquiring rival StorageTek for US$4.1 billion. This could be the last cash deal of this size that storage business work.

Then, in what could only be described as a manic Monday in September, Oracle announced that it was buying rival CRM-software maker Siebel for US$5.8 billion, and eBay picked up peer-to-peer voice networking company Skype for US$2.6 billion.

The eBay and Oracle deals added to the roughly 3,000 tech mergers announced in the first nine months this year, according to Thomson Financial.

While the number of deals is down in comparison to the same period last year, the total value of all deals this year, excluding assumption of debt, is US$109.9 billion--a 50 percent jump over the first nine months of last year.

HP to acquire identity management firm
Company hopes Trustgenix buy will enhance its OpenView software, bolster its presence in enterprise management.
Thursday, December 1, 2005

SAP to acquire Khimetrics
SAP has announced plans to acquire the retail software maker.
Wednesday, November 23, 2005

Nokia takes on RIM in mobile enterprise
Nokia will acquire wireless specialist Intellisync as it tries to be the one-stop shop for corporate mobility.
Thursday, November 17, 2005

MessageLabs to buy OmniPod for IM security
Acquisition of hosted secure enterprise instant messaging provider is MessageLabs' ticket into the instant messaging security fray.
Wednesday, November 2, 2005

EMC acquires Captiva for US$275 million
Furthering its shift from storage to information management, EMC adds software that lets customers turn paper documents into digital data.
Friday, October 21, 2005

HP to buy Peregrine for US$425 million
Computing giant plans to meld the software maker's product line with its own OpenView suite of business-monitoring tools.
Tuesday, September 20, 2005

Secure Computing to buy CyberGuard
Deal is expected to close in the fourth quarter, creating a company with 680 employees and a presence in 90 countries.
Monday, August 27, 2005

Sun to buy integration outfit SeeBeyond
Sun Microsystems plans to bolster its software lineup with the acquisition of integration specialist SeeBeyond for US$387 million in cash.
Wednesday, June 29, 2005

Juniper buys two start-ups
Company is beefing up enterprise portfolio with technology from two start-ups that will help improve network performance and security.
Wednesday, April 27, 2005

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