IBM announced this morning that it has agreed to acquire NoSQL vendor Cloudant. Cloudant, based in Boston, offers a cloud-hosted version of what is essentially the Apache CouchDB JSON document store. Financial terms were not disclosed.
Of the deal, expected to close in the first quarter of the year, Cloudant CTO and Co-Founder Adam Kocoloski said "Joining IBM allows Cloudant to innovate faster than ever before, and IBM's track record in open source software gives us complete confidence in our ongoing collaboration with the Apache CouchDB project. Cloudant could not have found a better home than IBM."
Cloudant runs on the IBM SoftLayer cloud platform and, as a cloud-only database as a service (DBaaS) offering, represents further investment in the cloud by IBM. Following the close of the acquisition deal, Cloudant will join IBM's newly formed Information and Analytics Group, a business unit within the IBM Software & Systems Group.
Many in the industry, including this author, have made projections that the great number of NoSQL and Big Data startups would consolidate, with megavendors like IBM, Oracle, Microsoft and SAP buying into the market. The IBM-Cloudant deal is perhaps the most significant evidence of this forecast coming to fruition. Oracle's announced acquisition of Big Data marketing firm Blue Kai this morning offers more such evidence.
MongoDB and Couchbase, two other leading NoSQL vendors, will now find themselves competing directly with IBM, and may see the need to pursue similar deals. Get the popcorn ready. NoSQL is going mainstream.