Top tech M&A deals of 2012

Our ongoing compilation of network and computing company mergers and acquisitions

A summary of who did the buying, who got bought, how much they went for and why. We'll be updating as more deals are made.

LOOK BACK: 2011’s Top Tech M&A Deals

Samsung Nvelo

Buyer: Samsung

Acquisition: NVELO

Why: Nvelo's Dataplex software is designed for caching data in SSDs to improve the speed of retrieval in devices (such as those Samsung sells) that use either HDDs (hard disk drives) or SSDs for their main storage.

Related story: Samsung buys SSD caching vendor Nvelo

Arris Google

Buyer: Arris Group

Acquisition: Google's Motorola Mobility set-top box business

Why: Google bought Motorola Mobility for its mobility assets and proceeded to look to sell off the home set-top box business. Through a patent license, Arris might build new links between the boxes and Motorola phones.

Related story: Google to unload Motorola set-top box unit with $2.35B sale to Arris

Dell Credant

Buyer: Dell

Acquisition: Credant

Why: Credant sells software and services to encrypt data and keep it secure as it is moved across PCs, mobile devices, USB drives, cloud services and other locations. Dell said it will use Credant software to enhance the security capabilities of its Latitude, OptiPlex and Precision computers.

Related story: Dell buying data-protection vendor Credant

microsoft storsimple

Buyer: Microsoft

Acquisition: StorSimple

Why: "StorSimple's approach of seamless integration of on-premise storage with cloud storage is clearly aligned with our Cloud OS vision," says Michael Park, Microsoft corporate vice president in the server and tools division. StorSimple's products "enable IT organizations to reduce the cost of storing data for backup, [disaster recovery] and archival."

Related story: Microsoft to acquire StorSimple for integrated cloud storage.

Buyer: Rapid7

Acquisition: Mobilisafe

Why: To allow the security firm, which provides network management and penetration-testing tools, to expand into mobile-risk management.

Related: Rapid7 acquires startup Mobilisafe

microsoft - yammer

Buyer: Microsoft

Acquisition: Yammer

Why: Microsoft wanted an enterprise social network platform that it can integrate with its cloud services and its collaboration platforms.

Buyer: IBM

Acquisition: Kenexa

Why: IBM plans to boost its enterprise social line of software by acquiring this maker of cloud-based human resources applications.

RELATED: IBM to buy cloud HR software vendor Kenexa for $1.3B

Emulex Endace

Buyer: Emulex

Acquisition: Endace

Why: To round out high-speed networking product line (10Gbps Ethernet NICs, etc.) with tools for monitoring and managing those fast networks.

RELATED: NICs and net management: Emulex buying Endace

citrix zenprise

Buyer: Citrix

Acquisition: Zenprise

Why: Citrix enhances its mobile device management (MDM) support by purchasing Zenprise, which allows for central control of mobile devices and native mobile, Windows, Web and cloud-based applications.

RELATED: Citrix acquires Zenprise to extend BYOD stack

cirix bytemobile

Buyer: Citrix

Acquisition: ByteMobile

Why: Citrix purchased ByteMobile, which provides data and video optimization tools for mobile network operators.

RELATED STORY: Citrix moves into mobile network optimization with Bytemobile buyout

Buyer: Axway

Acquisition: Vordel

Why: French-based B2B exchange company Axway, known for its Managed File Transfer (MFT) tools, bought Vordel, Massachusetts-based security firm that provides identity APIs to govern the flow of data to the cloud and mobile devices.

Thoma Bravo

BUYER: Thoma Bravo

ACQUISITION: Crossbeam

WHY: The companies say the acquisition will give Crossbeam reserves to expand its high-end security hardware business via internal development and acquisition. Thoma Bravo is noted for buying up companies and having them acquire other companies to expand their businesses.

Cisco Cariden

Buyer: Cisco

Acquisition: Cariden

Why: Network planning, design and traffic management software for service providers. To enhance the visibility and programmability of converged IP/optical networks through multilayer modeling and optimization of optical transport and IP/MPLS networks.

Buyer: Cisco

Acquisition: Cloupia

Why: Develops products for automating data center operations for the deployment and configuration of physical and virtual resources. provides a single "pane-of-glass" view into the automation of compute, network, storage, virtual machine and operating system resources. Will help control pools of compute, storage, networking and virtual machine resources in data centers.

Related: Cisco acquires Cloupia

Buyer: Cisco

Acquisition: Meraki

Why: Technology for cloud based management of wireless LAN, security appliances, and mobile devices. strategy to offer more software-centric solutions to simplify network management, help customers empower mobile workforces, and generate new revenue opportunities for partners.

Related: Cisco buys Meraki

Cisco

Buyer: Cisco

Acquisition: vCider

Why: Controller for network virtualization in cloud computing. Component of Cisco ONE plugin to the Quantum virtual networking capability of the OpenStack cloud orchestration project.

Cisco

Buyer: Cisco

Acquisition: ThinkSmart

Why: Wi-Fi based location services for collecting information on movement within a venue -- including time of day, traffic patterns and dwell times -- to improve customer service.

Buyer: Acronis

Acquisition: GroupLogic

Why: Acronis, which sells disaster recovery and data protection products, gains from GroupLogic secure enterprise file access, sharing and synching technology designed to safeguard and make available data wherever an end user is, including when connected via a mobile device. GroupLogic formed in 1988 in Arlington, Va.

Related: Acronis press release about the deal

Buyer: Oracle

Acquisition: Xsigo

Why: A week after VMware bought Nicira, Oracle announced its own deal in the virtualized network space when it inked a deal to purchase I/O hardware maker Xsigo, further solidifying its foray into cloud computing.

Buyer: VMware

Acquisition: Nicira

Why: Seeking to expand its vision of a virtualized datacenter, VMware purchased one of the leading software-defined networking companies, Nicira, whose founder and CTO is one of the pioneers of the OpenFlow SDN protocol. The move also signals VMware’s broadening support for competing hypervisors and open source standards.

Buyer: Stratus Technologies

Acquisition: Marathon Technologies

Why: Marathon's application availability software complements the Stratus line-up of fault-tolerant and high-availability servers.

Related: Stratus acquires competing HA software provider Marathon

EMC

Buyer: EMC

Acquisition: Silver Tail

Why: Silver Tail’s technology will give EMC capabilities to better detect Web fraud directed against banks and retailers.

Buyer: Toshiba

Acquisition: IBM's point-of-sale business

Why: The Japanese company taking over the hardware business while IBM shifts its focus to back-end software solutions.

RELATED STORY: Toshiba to buy IBM's retail Point-of-Sale business for $850 million

Buyer: General Dynamics

Acquisition: Fidelis Security Systems

Why: General Dynamics, which has a computer forensics group, wants to study and possibly integrate the Fidelis data-loss prevention technologies into future products and services.

Related: General Dynamics buying Fidelis

Buyer: Verizon

Acquisition: Hughes Telematics

Why: Verizon plans to extend Hughes Telematics' wireless communications technology for vehicles and fleet management to the asset tracking, mobile health and home automation areas.

Related story: Verizon to buy Hughes Telematics for its M2M tech

Buyer: Cisco

Acquisition: Truviso

Why: Truviso, a California-based, real-time Web analytics software company, will add the capability to analyze streaming data to the Cisco Prime network management platform.

RELATED STORY Cisco to acquire real-time network analytics firm Truviso

Buyer: Sophos

Acquisition: Dialogs Software

Why: Sophos plans to incorporate Dialogs' smartMan technology, which supports all types of mobile devices and operating systems including iOS, Android, BlackBerry, Windows Mobile and Symbian, into a Unified Threat Management suite that will also include its own mobile security and encryption products.

RELATED STORY: Sophos buys mobile device management vendor Dialogs

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Why: IBM hopes Varicent will help broaden its ability to automate data collection and analytics, tying in with its recent announcement of the new PureSystems line of integrated IT.

Why: Citrix looks to expand its enterprise collaboration tools by purchasing the startup company that provides cloud-based business process applications.

Related story: Citrix buys further into social collaboration

BUYER: Dell

ACQUISITION: Wyse Technology

WHY: To give the company a quick way into the thin client market – and to close the gap on competitor HP.

Related story: Dell's acquisition a Wyse one, analysts say

BUYER: Dell

ACQUISITION: Make Technologies

WHY: Make’s ability to ease the transition from legacy systems into the cloud provides Dell with a potent new capability.

Related story: Dell to acquire modernization specialist Make Technologies

Buyer: Cisco

Acquisition: NDS

Why: Video software and content security systems for service providers and media companies to fill out Cisco's Videoscape cloud-based TV offerings. Builds up Cisco's software zand services expertise in cloud-based video and content deliver and security.

Buyer: Nukona

Acquiring company: Symantec

Why: Nukona’s enterprise apps store and policy manager software for mobile smartphones and tablets furthers Symantec’s BYOD security strategy for the enterprise

Buyer: Avaya

Acquisition: Radvision

Why: Unified communications provider Avaya aims to extend its videoconferencing abilities with the purchase of Radvision, an Israeli company that specializes in low bandwidth, high definition video services for providers and end users. Avaya hopes to make videoconferencing as easy as making a phone call on a range of devices including desktops and tablets.

Related story: Avaya giving UC line a video boost

Buyer: Dell Company

Acquisition: SonicWall

Why: To expand Dell’s security product line by adding SonicWall’s firewall and email security products, according to John Swainson, president, Dell Software Group

Buyer: Trustwave

Acquisition: M86 Security

Why: Trustwave gains a slew of Web application and email products and anti-malware-detection technologies, plus more threat intelligence and research.

Buyer: ManTech International

Acquisition: HBGary

Why: ManTech offers forensic services to government agencies for hundreds of millions of dollars; HBGary offers malware detection software, notably Active Defense and Responder. The combination promises to bring services to HBGary’s software customers as well as bring ManTech some of HBGary’s high-end private-sector clients.

Buyer: Apple

Acquisition: Chomp

Why: Apple didn’t say how it would integrate Chomp’s technology into its own, but the San Francisco company has developed of a search engine that helps users find mobile apps based on their functions, and not just their name, so would seem to be a fit for Apple’s assorted app stores.

Related story: Apple acquires app search company Chomp

Buyer: AMD

Acquisition: SeaMicro

Why: This is a surprise move that puts AMD in the systems business and disrupts Intel by acquiring one of its close partners. SeaMicro, an 80-employee Silicon Valley startup, has gained attention for building highly dense and power-efficient servers for use in large-scale cloud computing environments. AMD plans to sell SeaMicro-branded servers directly to customers, but it bought the company primarily for its technology, which it hopes to license to other server vendors to build their own low-power systems.

Related story: AMD buys SeaMicro, enters server hardware business

Buyer: Cisco

Acquisition: Virtuata

Why: Virtuata’s security solutions for cloud services and virtual machines is expected to become part of Cisco’s data center suite.

Related story: Shopaholic Cisco buys Virtuata

Buyer: Oracle

Acquisition: Collective Intellect

Why: Oracle will use Collective Intellect's "social intelligence" technologies to help its customers track and analyze the conversations their customers are having on social media websites.

Related story: Oracle buys Collective Intellect for 'social intelligence' tools

Buyer: Google

Acquisition: Meebo

Why: Seems to fit with Google's social media and advertising businesses. Meebo's main product is a toolbar that sits at the bottom of a publisher's website. It lets publishers display pop-up messages to users, integrates social media sites including Twitter and Facebook and offers a slot for advertising on the left-hand side.

Related story: Google acquires social media toolbar maker Meebo

Buyer: LinkedIn

Acquisition: SlideShare

Why: SlideShare allows users to upload presentations publicly or privately, which can be embedded on blogs, websites, company intranets and shared across Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn, though it's unclear as yet how LinkedIn will take further advantage of the technology.

RELATED STORY: LinkedIn to buy SlideShare for $119M

Buyer: Salesforce.com

Acquisition: Stypi

Why: Stypi is described as a real-time editor that allows multiple users to make changes to a single document at the same time, by sharing the URL to the document. It is not clear whether Salesforce.com acquired Stypi for its staff or to integrate the technology with some of its own social collaboration technologies.

RELATED STORY: Salesforce.com acquires collaboration tool company Stypi

Buyer: Yammer

Acquisition: OneDrum

Why: The addition of OneDrum's technology will allow users to gain access to Yammer files through a desktop folder, which will contain folders for their various Yammer groups, the company said. Files can be dragged into the folder and uploaded to Yammer, which synchronizes them back to other group members' desktops.

Related story: Yammer buys OneDrum for Office collaboration tools

Buyer: VMware

Acquisition: DynamicOps

Why: VMware's acquisition of cloud management company DynamicOps could signal that the virtualization company is truly beginning to embrace non-VMware centered clouds, something analysts say is not only good for customers, but necessary for the company.

Buyer: IBM

Acquisition: Vivisimo

Why: Vivisimo will bring about 120 employees – and a great deal of big data analytics expertise – to IBM. Vivisimo’s client list includes the Navy, Air Force, Social Security Administration, and the Defense Intelligence Agency.

Buyer: Akamai

Acquisition: Blaze Software

Why: Blaze’s browser-level Web performance optimization technology fits with Akamai’s overall effort to speed up Web content delivery.

Related story: Akamai Buys Blaze as Web Optimization Heats Up in Boston

Buyer: Oracle

Acquisition: Taleo

Why: Taleo's applications focus on talent management, which includes areas such as recruitment, learning and development, and compensation and succession planning. It remains to be seen exactly how Taleo's product portfolio will be aligned with Oracle's Fusion human capital management software, which is also available as a cloud offering, and has some overlapping functionality.

Related story: Oracle buying Taleo for US$1.9 billion in direct hit at SAP

Buyer: Rackspace

Acquisition: SharePoint911

Why: Rackspace said that by adding SharePoint911 it will be able to offer a wider variety of SharePoint services, from hosting the software to consulting businesses on how to use it.

Related story: Rackspace buys Sharepoint consultancy

Buyer: Dell

Acquisition: AppAssure Networks

Why: Analysts have predicted that Dell, which recently put industry veteran John Swainson in charge of its software group, will build out the company’s software portfolio with a focus on system management and cloud services, and the AppAssure deal seems to fit that profile.

Related story: Dell buys AppAssure for software backup

Buyer: Ericsson

Acquisition: BelAir Networks

Why: The acquisition will give Ericsson a carrier-grade Wi-Fi portfolio, technological expertise, intellectual property rights, and established customer contracts and relationships.

Related story: Ericsson acquires Wi-Fi specialist BelAir Networks

Buyer: Juniper

Acquisition: Mykonos Software

Why: Bolsters Juniper’s offerings with Web security software for zero-day attacks and advanced persistent threats.

Related story: Juniper buys web security company for $80 million

Buyer: Cisco

Acquisition: Lightwire

Why: Brings Cisco CMOS silicon technology for optical networks. The smaller-size, lower-power consumption and scalability of Lightwire's CMOS-based technology enables switches, routers and optical transport systems to have higher-density optical connectivity at a lower cost, Cisco says.

Related story: Cisco buys optical company for $271 million

Buyer: Net Optics

Acquisition: nMetrics (through Triplelayer buyout)

Why: In a move to broaden its offerings for the growing network intelligence and diagnostics market, telecom equipment manufacturer Net Optics recently announced the acquisition of network analytics software provider nMetric. Net Optics cited customers' rising security and bandwidth concerns as main reasons for the acquisition saying enterprise customers had grown concerned about threats lurking on network access points that were going unused.

Related story: Net Optics acquires nMetric, targets network intelligence

Buyer: Twitter

Acquisition: Dasient

Why: Dasient, which describes itself as a cloud-based Web antimalware technology company, introduced in 2010 a service to protect advertisement networks and publishers from malicious ads. The acquisition fits with Twitter's plans to expand revenue from advertising including promoted Twitter messages and accounts.

Related story: Twitter acquires antimalware company Dasient

Buyer: Apple

Acquisition: Anobit Technologies

Why: Apple wouldn’t say why it bought the Israeli company, which Computerworld says “uses consumer-grade NAND flash memory technology to make storage products for data centers… Apple is the industry's largest consumer of NAND flash technology, so acquiring Anobit would give it a means of addressing reliability problems that arise as solid-state memory shrinks in size.”

Related story: Apple confirms acquisition of flash memory maker

Buyer: Intel

Acquisition: QLogic Infiniband assets

Why: Intel is looking to provide storage and server bandwidth that will allow systems to achieve exaflop computing, and it feels that the Infiniband technology will help it achieve this.

Related story: Intel agrees to buy QLogic InfiniBand assets for $125M

Buyer: IBM

Acquisition: Worklight

Why: The move that will give IBM a range of cross-platform mobile application development technologies. Worklight, which is based in Israel, had already partnered with IBM, and its offerings include Worklight Studio, an Eclipse-based IDE and Worklight Server, described on the company's website as a "secure and scalable gateway between applications, external services, and the enterprise backend infrastructure."

Related story: IBM buys Worklight for mobile software platform

Buyer: IBM

Acquisition: Green Hat

Why: Green Hat offers a virtual test environment platform that allows development teams to test applications without the need to set up multiple physical labs, saving them time and money, according to IBM. The Green Hat products will be rolled into IBM's Rational division, which already offers a wealth of software development and testing tools.

Related story: IBM acquiring software testing vendor Green Hat

Buyer: Symantec

Acquisition: LiveOffice

Why: Symantec said the acquisition will allow it to add to its information governance products, allowing customers to have the choice to store information either on-premise or in Symantec's data centers or a mix of both.

Related story: Symantec acquires LiveOffice cloud-based archiving company

Buyer: Juniper

Acquisition: BitGravity (via Tata)

Why: Juniper purchased the service management layer technology of BitGravity's content delivery network offering. Juniper plans to use the BitGravity CDN technology with its own MediaFlow content management products to enable media providers to deliver online content more efficiently and improve service.

Related story: Juniper acquires BitGravity content technology, engineers

Buyer: Oracle

Acquisition: Xsigo

Why: A week after VMware bought Nicira, Oracle announced its own deal in the virtualized network space when it inked a deal to purchase I/O hardware maker Xsigo, further solidifying its foray into cloud computing.

Related story: Oracle buys Xsigo for software-defined networking

Buyer: Silver Lake Sumeru

Acquisition: Velocity

Why: IT equity firm Silver Lake Sumeru's investment in cloud application management provider Velocity will accelerate deployment of new capabilities and allow Velocity to broaden its offering.