16.6 billion yuan acquisition case! IBM Expands Artificial Intelligence and Hybrid Cloud Landscape



Dec 20, 2023

On December 18th, IBM announced that it would acquire the enterprise technology platform StreamSets and webMethods of European system software supplier Software AG for 2.13 billion euros (approximately 16.63 billion yuan) in cash. The transaction is expected to be completed in the second quarter of 2024. Industry insiders say that through this acquisition, IBM will further expand its presence in artificial intelligence and hybrid clouds.

It is reported that StreamSets is a cloud native DataOps and data ingestion platform that allows businesses to achieve consistent data access and delivery across a wide range of data sources and types. WebMethods provide additional integration and API management tools for hybrid multi cloud environments for customers and partners, which can be deployed in self built facilities and cloud platforms. The two constitute Software AG’s so-called “Super iPaas” business, which includes modern application architecture, platform and ecosystem business models, integration, and business process automation.

Software AG stated that its iPaaS platform is growing and profitable, with significant recurring revenue, and these two services have over 1500 customers worldwide. Christian Lucas, Chairman of the Supervisory Board of Software AG and Silverlake Investment Management Partner, stated that the StreamSets and webMethods teams will collaborate with the IBM team to build hybrid cloud and next-generation artificial intelligence solutions for businesses.

Rob Thomas, Senior Vice President and Chief Business Officer for Software at IBM, stated that StreamSets and webMethods will help customers unleash the full potential of their applications and data. IBM Senior Vice President Rob Thomas stated that this powerful combination helps drive innovation while preparing AI for the business, regardless of where applications or data are located.

Currently, IBM is vigorously seeking to strengthen its performance in the artificial intelligence and hybrid cloud markets. In addition to continuously integrating different cloud computing and self built services, IBM has made multiple attempts to expand its own territory through investment and mergers and acquisitions. For example, in 2018, IBM spent $34 billion to acquire software and service company Red Riding Hood, a deal seen as an important step in IBM’s bet on hybrid clouds. In 2023, IBM acquired companies such as Apptio and Manta to supplement its capabilities in artificial intelligence.

In order to simplify operations and focus on core advantages, IBM is constantly divesting underperforming businesses. This includes its semiconductor manufacturing, x86 servers, hosting infrastructure services, Watson Health, and other businesses.

According to financial report data, IBM’s total revenue in the third quarter of 2023 was $14.752 billion, an increase of 4.6% compared to $14.107 billion in the same period last year; The operating profit from continuing operations was $2 billion, a 23% increase compared to the same period last year.

Among them, the revenue of the software business department (including hybrid platform and solution business and transaction processing business) was 6.265 billion US dollars, an increase of 7.8% compared to the same period last year; The gross profit margin is 79.5%, which has also increased compared to last year. Of particular note, the revenue of the hybrid platform and solution business increased by 8% year-on-year, while the revenue of the data and AI department increased by 6% year-on-year. It can be seen that IBM’s emphasis on artificial intelligence and hybrid clouds is driving steady growth in core business revenue.
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