IBM-OpenPages Combination Just Makes Sense

Lora Bentley

IBM announced Wednesday it has agreed to buy risk management and compliance software specialist OpenPages for an undisclosed sum. For IBM, it's a chance to add a risk management layer to its business analytics offerings, according to eWEEK. In a statement, IBM general manager for business analytics Rob Ashe said:

Integrating risk management systems across once-divided units and functions is essential to seeing the bigger picture. The combination of IBM and OpenPages will provide a holistic and consistent approach to risk management helping companies combine that insight with performance management to drive better decision making.


OpenPages has been focused on integrating risk management across the enterprise since its beginning, so the combination makes sense for the Massachusetts company, too. Even last year when I spoke to OpenPages marketing director John Kelly, he told me the company had been getting the most traction in helping customers achieve a converged approach to risk management. He said:

We're seeing there can be pretty significant savings and a pretty good return on investment, particularly in risk and compliance where you have a lot of the same methodologies and workflows. It doesn't make sense to have all the different silos. It can be a major productivity loss.

For example, he said, with OpenPages' help, one particular customer was able to converge 18 different risk management processes and point solutions into one seamless system.


In a statement announcing the acquisition, OpenPages CEO Michael Duffy said:

Every day we hear firsthand about the risk and compliance management issues that businesses face, and it's clear that a new information architecture is needed to deliver valuable risk intelligence that empowers risk-based decision making. The combination of IBM and OpenPages software, business products insights and industry expertise will address this need.


The acquisition of OpenPages is not the first IBM has made in recent years to build its business analytics offerings. As my colleague Mike Vizard has pointed out, the company has spent $11 billion to acquire companies that specialize in business analytics.

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