IBM today announced plans to acquire Netezza, a provider of data-warehousing appliances, for $1.7 billion.
Should the deal be consummated, IBM wants to add Netezza's latest generation of Twinfin appliances for deploying analytics applications on top of data warehouses to the IBM lineup.
IBM has been steadily adding companies to its portfolio of business analytics companies, starting with the acquisitions of Cognos and SPSS. Although IBM has moved to deploy Smart Analytics systems that the company developed internally, Arvind Krishna, IBM, general manager of the information-management business in the IBM Software Group, says the addition of Netezza will give IBM a data-warehouse platform for running analytic applications that can be quickly deployed with a minimal amount of IT intervention.
Krishna says that while Netezza will become part of the IBM Software group, the company plans to maintain some Netezza and Twinfin branding to distinguish the Netezza approach from more customizable solutions such as Smart Analytics.
Netezza CEO Jim Baum said that while customers should also expect Netezza platforms to be optimized for IBM data sources, the company will continue to integrate Netezza platforms with other sources of data as well.
In general, IT vendors of all types are lining up to provide analytics offerings, all intended to give business executives easy access to reliable data so they can make more informed business decisions. While the concept of a data-warehouse appliance is not particularly new, Netezza has received credit for making the deployment and adoption of these types of appliance much simpler.
To do that, IBM is making it clear that it too sees bundling software and hardware together as the best way to do that.