Informatica Seen as Attractive to Tech Titans

Loraine Lawson

Informatica must really annoy some big tech vendors and market analsyts who love to predict its demise.


For one thing, it just won't go away. When the tech titans bought out other pure-play ETL companies a few years ago, Informatica wouldn't sell. Suddenly, Informatica's competition was IBM and Oracle, and analysts were certain the small company would struggle to stay competitive.


But that's not what happened, as Rick Sherman, founder of Athena IT Solutions and the Data Doghouse blogger, recently pointed out:

Instead, Informatica has thrived and become the Switzerland of data integration because the reality is many enterprises have software from several of the Titans and need a data integration suite that they can count on to treat all data sources even handedly. ... It's consistently ranked one of the top two data integration products along with IBM by Gartner research and Forrester Research. Informatica is the crown jewel of data integration.

I don't want to sound biased-because really, I don't have any recommendations or preferences-but everybody loves an underdog who wins. And Informatica repeatedly fits the profile, down to its latest quarterly report, which, at $123.4 million, topped analysts' estimates by 20 percent, according to Intelligent Enterprise.


Naturally, this once again lead to speculation over whether someone bigger and badder would buy out Informatica.


But CEO Sohaib Abbasi told Intelligent Enterprise he's not interested in selling out Informatica's independence:

Our neutrality has allowed us to distinguish Informatica as the leading partner in data integration.... Look at our partners - Oracle, SAP, Microsoft, Hewlett-Packard, Intel - each one embeds Informatica, and each one ships Informatica products. . . . Accenture has a specialty practice for Informatica - it's very rare for them to have special practice - and it's the same with Wipro.


Despite Abbasi's comments, those who watch the market still believe Informatica will end up being acquired by a larger company. Sherman listed Informatica, SAS, MicroStrategy, Netezza and Teradata as potential targets for titans like Microsoft, IBM, HP, Oracle, SAP and EMC.

Even the Intelligent Enterprise can't resist speculating about a buyout, noting, "The odds seem to be in favor of an acquisition offer that's just too good for Abbasi, the board, and shareholders to pass up...."

So far, Informatica has proved all the predictions wrong. Ironically enough, this has only led to more predictions. Personally, I'm not a betting gal. When it comes to Informatica, that seems to be the wisest choice.

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