Novell is to buy businesses service management software supplier Managed Objects, for an undisclosed sum.
BSM software helps companies map the performance of their IT systems against day-to-day business processes, and the market has become increasingly concentrated. It is dominated by IBM, Hewlett-Packard, CA and BMC – smaller rivals, such as Compuware and FireScope remain independent.
Novell has other software in the IT management arena, but in areas like identity, datacentre and asset management, as opposed to the type of service modelling and analysis tools sold by Managed Objects.
That is why existing Managed Objects customers should have little to fear, in terms of the future of the vendor's product line, according to Michael Coté, an analyst with Redmonk .
"With most acquisitions, the thing you're always worried about is overlapping technology and that something will be eliminated. But Novell bought something they didn't have," Coté said.
The deal is expected to close during the first quarter of Novell's 2009 financial year, which runs from 1 November to 31 January. Novell plans to integrate Managed Objects into its Systems and Resource Management business unit.
Managed Objects' customers include Fidelity Investments and Verizon.
Novell plans to retain the majority of Managed Objects' employees, but "there's always redundancy that comes into these situations," said Richard Whitehead, director of marketing for datacentre solutions at Novell. He declined to say how many workers Managed Objects has or disclose any other details about the company's size.
As for Managed Objects' customers, "the big message there is that we do not want them to see any change in the support and the product road maps they've seen," Whitehead said. "We hope they even see improved capabilities from the acquisition."