This is my 30,000 foot look at events in the ICT industry for September 2014. What you see here is a précis of the monthly report I produce, which will be available in more detail at the News section of the Eagle website, where you will also find back issues.
A Little History of September in previous years …
Five years ago in September 2009 saw Dell pay $3.9 Billion for Perot Systems and Xerox buying ACS for $6.4 Billion. Ebay sold its majority holding in Skype to a group of investors for $1.9 Billion and Adobe shelled out $1.8 billion for web analytics company Omniture, in addition to buying Business Catalyst. Nortel sold its Enterprise Solutions unit to Avaya for $915 Million; EMC added a couple of acquisitions, Kazeon Systems and Fastscale technology; Raytheon picked up internet pioneer BBN and CA shelled out $200 million for NetQoS. Three years ago in September 2010HP bought 3PAR for $2.4 Billion and they also paid $1.5 Billion for Arcsight and 3M paid close to $1 Billion for Cogent. RIM bought a substantial part of DataViz, Ericsson beat out a local Ottawa based group in an auction for another piece of the defunct Nortel empire, CA bought Hyperformix; and AOL bought TechCrunch. In September 2011 Broadcom paid $3.7 Billion for NetLogic. Google was busy, buying restaurant reviewer Zagat plus acquiring 1,000 patents from IBM. Ottawa’s Zarlink was bought by Microsemi for $525 million. SAP bought Crossgate, Twitter bought Julpan and CSC bought Indian software testing company AppLabs, and Hitachi Data Systems continued the consolidation in the storage industry with the acquisition of BlueArc. September 2012 was a quiet month in M&A deals. Infosys increased its management consultancy capability with the $330 million purchase of Lodestone. Lenovo bought Stoneware, a software company focused on the cloud, and Ericsson bought ConceptWave. A couple of interesting investment moves saw Microsoft invest in Klout and Silicon Valley VC Chameth Palihapitiya invest in Xtreme Labs. In September 2013 Blackberry announced a quarterly loss of almost $1 million and laid off 4,500 people. Microsoft bought Nokia’s devices and services unit for more than $7 billion. Ebay paid $800 million for payment platform Braintree; Synnex bought IBM’s customer care division for $505 million; Rogers added to its data centre capacity with the $161 million purchase of Pivot Data Centres; Extreme Networks bought Entersys Networks for $180 million; and Manitoba Telephone Systems bought Epic Information Systems.
Which brings us back to the present …
September 2014 saw some big deals announced, including Microsoft’s $2.5 billion purchase of Mojang, the gaming company responsible for Minecraft, Lenovo’s $2.1 billion purchase of IBM’s x86 server business and Cognizant’s $2.7 billion purchase of healthcare company, Trizetto Corp. Hootsuite had an injection of cash and bought two companies, social telephony company Zeetl and social media marketing platform Brightkit. Google also made two acquisitions, biotech company Lift Labs and desktop polling company Polar. There were plenty more deals announced, including Yahoo’s $8 million purchase of cloud based document hosting company Bookpad; Cisco’s purchase of private cloud company Metacloud; SAP’s purchase of expense software company Concur; Blackberry’s purchase of virtual identity software startup Movirtu and Red Hat’s purchase of mobile app company FeedHenry.
Other than M&A news, the Canadian government seem to be heading down a harsh path with HP based on activity in Russia by an HP subsidiary … really? Larry Ellison has passed his CEO of Oracle role along to dual CEOs Safra Catz and Mark Hurd; I hope they fare better than Blackberry’s former co-CEOs. The “always connected” PC seems to be on its way, which could prove handy for many situations.
US economic news, studies, surveys and reports all seem to be positive which is good news for that economy. Canada is a little more mixed with an 11,000 drop in jobs in August however upcoming job prospects seem to look good according to some surveys.
That is what I saw in the tech news for September. I will be back in just about a month. Until then Walk Fast and Smile!
Kevin Dee is CEO of Eagle (a Professional Staffing Company)
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