Hottest tech M&A deals of 2008

Hottest tech M&A deals of 2008

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.

AT&T and Wayport

Buyer: AT&T

Acquisition: Wayport

When announced: November

Price: $275 million

Why: Expands the scope of AT&T's Wi-Fi business via buyout of a network and applications management company that provides back-office management for Wi-Fi hot spots

Related story: AT&T snaps up Wayport to gain Wi-Fi boost

Antenna Software and Vettro

Buyer: Antenna

Acquisition: Vettro's assets

When: November

Price: Undisclosed

Why: To fill out Antenna's line of mobile application products (Vettro specialized in mobile field service apps)

Related story: Start-ups starting to feel economic pain

AT&T-Centennial Communications

Buyer: AT&T

Acquisition: Centennial

When announced: November

Price: $944 million

Why: In purchasing Centennial, a regional provider of wireless communications services, AT&T says it will improve its wireless coverage in several rural areas in both the continental United States and in Puerto Rico

Related story: AT&T spends $944 million to acquire Centennial Communications

CA and Eurekify

Buyer: CA

Acquisition: Eurekify

When: November

Price: Undisclosed

Why: Adds automated role provisioning and identity life-cycle management capabilities to CA's Identity Manager software. The addition of this type of automation in CA's identity management arsenal will help customers reduce costs and improve outdated processes around identities to meet current compliance and security requirements, analysts say.

Related Story: CA to buy ID management vendor Eurekify

IBM and Transitive

Buyer: IBM

Acquisition: Transitive

When: November

Price: Undisclosed

Why: Cross-platform virtualization allows consolidation of x86 Linux workloads onto IBM mainframes and Power servers.

Related Story: IBM buy targets server consolidation

Novell-Managed Objects

Buyer: Novell

Acquisition: Managed Objects

When announced: October

Price: Undisclosed

Why: Service modeling and analysis tools flesh out Novell IT management portfolio that already includes identity, data-center and asset management tools

Related story: Novell buying Managed Objects for BSM

Intel-NetEffect

Buyer: Intel

Acquisition: NetEffect

When announced: October

Price: $8 million

Why: NetEffect's Gigabit Ethernet and 10-Gigabit Ethernet adapters, ASICs and intellectual property will complement Intel's current Ethernet portfolio

Related story: Intel buys data-center Ethernet maker NetEffect

Citrix and Vapps

Buyer: Citrix

Acquisition: Vapps

When: October

Price: $26.6 million

Why: Citrix can add Vapps' high-definition voice service to its GoToMeeting conferencing service, which is also compatible with Skype, and the deal also brings Vapps customers

Related Story: Citrix buys high-def video conferencing player

Buyer: HP

Acquisition: LeftHand Networks

When announced: October

Price: $360 million

Why: To fill in its storage virtualization and iSCSI lines with products for medium-size companies and remote offices and branches.

Related story: HP to buy LeftHand Networks for $360 million

Symantec-MessageLabs

Buyer: Symantec

Acquisition: MessageLabs

When: October

Price: $695 million

Why: For Symantec, the acquisition gives it an alternative e-mail security offering to BrightMail, the company's antispam and antivirus appliance. MessageLabs offers a hosted spam and Web traffic filtering service.

Related story: Symantec to buy e-mail security vendor MessageLabs

Quest Software and NetPro

Buyer: Quest Software

Acquisition: NetPro (maker of Windows-based management tools focus on security/compliance, infrastructure administration and identity/access)

When announced : September

Price: $78.7 million in cash

Why: Quest wants to become the top dog in Windows infrastructure management including building bridges to other platforms. Competitor NetPro gives them not only some complementary technology but a proven engineering staff.

Related stories: Quest grabs NetPro to strengthen Windows management wares | Quest's post-acquisition road map a killer for NetPro

Kace and Computers In Motion

Buyer: Kace

Acquisition: Intellectual property and principal engineers of Computers In Motion

When: September

Price: Undisclosed

Why: Kace will use Computers In Motion application virtualization technology to equip its KBOX suite of appliances with the ability to deploy applications to endpoint machines without changing the target system, enabling ease of administration, enhanced security and better license management.

Related story: Kace acquires application virtualization technology

Cisco and Jabber

Buyer: Cisco

Acquisition: Jabber

When announced : September

Price: Undisclosed

Why: Presence and IM for on-, off-premise collaboration services, integration with WebEx Connect

Related story: Cisco buys Jabber

Related podcast: Can Cisco makes its mark in the collaboration game?

Red Hat and Qumranet

Buyer: Red Hat

Acquisition, Qumranet, an Israeli developer of the open-source KVM (kernel-based virtual machine) project

When announced: September

Price: $107 million

Why: A closer hold on KVM will be useful for Red Hat, which announced in June that it is building an embedded hypervisor with Web-based management capabilities, Ovirt, based on the software.

Related story: Red Hat buys Qumranet to extend virtualization reach

Oracle and ClearApp

Buyer: Oracle

Acquisition: ClearApp

When announced: September

Price: Undisclosed

Why: To provide Oracle with software for managing the performance of composite applications in service-oriented architecture environments. It will work alongside Oracle's Enterprise Manager platform.

Related story: Oracle buys ClearApp for SOA management

Salesforce and Instranet

Buyer: Salesforce

Acquisition: Instranet

When: August

Price: $31.5 million

Why: Adds tools for supporting customer satisfaction in call center interactions

Related Story: Salesforce buys InStranet for call-center tech

Symantec and PC Tools

Buyer: Symantec

Acquisition: PC Tools

When: August

Price: $31.5 million

Why: Adds PC maintenance, anti-spyware (Spyware Doctor) and other utilities to Symantec's portfolio, and provides Symantec with more threat research resources

Related Story: Aussie security company set to be bought by Symantec

Symantec and nSuite

Buyer: Symantec

Acquisition: nSuite

When: August

Price: Undisclosed

Why: For Symantec to build out its portfolio of virtualization security and management technologies

Related Story: Symantec buys nSuite for virtualization security, management

Nortel and Pingtel

Buyer: Nortel

Acquisition: Pingtel assets (via BlucSocket)

When: August

Price: Undisclosed

Why: Enables Nortel to become more software-oriented via acquisition of software-based unified communications system Related story

Related Story: Nortel acquires assets of SIP software developer

HP and Colubris

Buyer: HP

Acquisition: Colubris

When: August

Price: Undisclosed

Why: Bolsters HP's wireless LAN offerings, addresses vertical markets such as education

Related Story: HP bolsters wireless LAN stature with Colubris buy

Oracle and Global Knowledge Software

Buyer: Oracle

Acquisition: Global Knowledge Software

When: July

Price: Undisclosed

Why: Oracle is a longtime GKS customer and plans to provide training content modules for all its applications using GKS technology

Related Story: Oracle buys Global Knowledge Software

Enterasys and Gores and Siemens' Enteprise Communications group

Buyer: Gores Group (owner of Enterasys)

Acquisition: Siemens' Enterprise Communications group

When: July

Price: Gores and Siemens invested approximately $550 million in the joint venture

Why: To provide more scale in battling Cisco in the enterprise. Combines VoIP and secure Ethernet switch lines

Related stories: Siemens enterprise, Enterasys in $550M joint venture | Enterasys users should welcome Siemens deal -- for now, analysts say

McAfee and Reconnex

Buyer: McAfee

Acquisition: Reconnex

When announced: July

Price: $46 million

Why: Adds data leakage protection products to McAfee's portfolio at a time when customer interest in such products is rising

Related stories: McAfee to buy data protection vendor Reconnex | McAfee outlines DLP integration strategy with Reconnex

Motorola and AirDefense

Buyer: Motorola

Acquisition: AirDefense

When: July

Price: Undisclosed

Why: Gives Motorola's enterprise division a well-regarded wireless intrusion prevention system (IPS), which uses radio sensors and software that detect, classify, locate, and block connections between enterprise WLAN access points and clients and unauthorized wireless devices

Related Story: Motorola buys WLAN intrusion prevention vendor AirDefense

Cisco and Pure Networks

Buyer: Cisco Systems

Acquisition: Pure Networks , maker of software for easier home networking

When: July

Price: About $120 million

Why: Enable Cisco to better serve a home network market in which consumers are doing more management, security, etc. of their connected devices. Synchs up with Cisco's Linksys offerings.

Related Story: Cisco to buy home-network software vendor

Brocade and Foundry

Buyer: Brocade Communications Systems

Acquisition: Foundry Networks

When: July

Price: About $3 billion

Why: Brocade said the deal will make it a top provider of networking gear for enterprises and service providers, by allowing it to offer a full line of products that extends from the Internet to WANs and LANs and into the data center. Foundry has been profitable, but faced an uphill climb on its own vs. Cisco.

Related Story: Watch out Cisco: Here comes Brocade/Foundry

Microsoft and Powerset

Buyer: Microsoft

Acquisition: Powerset, maker of search engine technology

When announced: July

Price: Undisclosed, though rumored to be around $100 million

Why: To bolster Microsoft's search technology with semantic search technology. Semantic search attempts to extract meaning from search queries and Web pages rather than simply matching them up with relevant links based on keywords or previous or related searches.

Related story: Microsoft, Powerset confirm deal

Aspect Software and BlueNote

Networks Buyer: Aspect

Acquisition: BlueNote (most of its assets)

When announced: July

Price: Undisclosed

Why: Bolsters Aspect 's unified communications for the contact center strategy. Aspect says: "Leveraging the BlueNote Networks technology, Aspect Software customers will now be able to extend session initiation protocol (SIP)-based voice, video and other real-time interactive communication services to enterprise users as an integral part of a service oriented architecture (SOA)."

More info here .

Belden and Trapeze

Buyer: Belden

Acquisition: Trapeze

When: June

Price: $133 million

Why: The purchase adds a complete controller-based WLAN product line to Belden's existing copper and fiber optic cabling, cable management, and connectivity products

Related Story: Belden to buy wireless LAN vendor Trapeze

Progress Software and Iona Technologies

Buyer: Progress

Acquisition: Iona

When: June

Price: $162 million

Why: Progress boosts its SOA line with middleware and enterprise service bus technology from Dublin, Ireland-based Iona.

Related Story: Progress buys Iona for SOA wares

Symantec and SwapDrive

Buyer: Symantec

Acquisition: SwapDrive

When announced: June

Price: Undisclosed

Why: SwapDrive provides Web-based file backup and recovery services, giving Symantec a new avenue into the consumer storage market.

Related story: Symantec buys online backup vendor SwapDrive

Tibco Software and Insightful

Buyer: Tibco

Acquisition: Insightful

When: June

Price: About $25 million

Why: Adds data mining and business intelligence technology to Tibco's business optimization product portfolio.

Related Story: Tibco boosts BI with Insightful buy

Veeam and Nworks

Buyer: Veeam Software

Acquisition: Nworks

When announced: June

Price: Undisclosed

Why: The Nworks technology will augment Veeam's suite of virtual management tools with the capability to manage both physical and virtual environments from one tool, but also provide more deep insight into how VMware, HP and Microsoft technologies work.

Related story: Virtual server management marriage

Cisco and DiviTech

Buyer: Cisco

Acquisition: DiviTech

When: June

Price: Undisclosed

Why: Cisco plans to integrate DiviTech's DSM product with its ROSA network and element-management system to create a platform that offers digital video element, network and service management in a single product.

Related Story: Cisco broadens video vision with acquisition, product expansion

Perimeter and Edgeos

Buyer: Perimeter eSecurity, managed services company

Acquisition: Edgeos, security company

When: June

Price: Undisclosed

Why: The acquisition of Edgeos, whose offerings include data scans and vulnerability assessments, will advance the security capabilities of Perimeter's compliance products like PCI Compliance Solution Suite, Perimeter says.

Related Story: Perimeter buys Edgeos to boost security offerings

HP buys EDS

Buyer: HP

Acquisition: EDS

When announced: May

Price: $13.9 billion

Why: EDS was the No. 2 vendor in IT services behind IBM in 2007, reporting $22.7 billion in revenue, and that will enable HP to more than double its revenue in the high margin market for services.

Related stories: HP buys EDS for $13.9 billion | FAQ: What does the HP-EDS deal really mean? | What EDS is telling its people about HP deal

Blue Coat Systems and Packeteer

Buyer: Blue Coat, security and WAN acceleration company

Acquisition: Packeteer, WAN optimization vendor

When announced: April

Price: $268 million

Why: Blue Coat will integrate Packeteer features, including the company's traffic prioritization technology, into its own Blue Coat ProxySG line of appliances. The deal will also help Blue Coat reach more customers through Packeteer's well-established global sales and distribution channel.

Related story: Blue Coat to acquire Packeteer for $268 million

Symantec to buy AppStream

Buyer: Symantec

Acquisition: AppStream, a seller of software used to deliver applications to the corporate desktop on demand

When announced: April

Price: Undisclosed

Why: The acquisition will help Symantec better compete companies such as Microsoft (SoftGrid) and the VMware (Thinstall Virtualization Suite)

Related story: Symantec to buy AppStream

Sun Microsystems and Montalvo Systems

Buyer: Sun

Acquisition: Montalvo

When announced: April

Price: Undisclosed

Why: Montalvo is believed to working on a low-power processor that aims to compete with chips from Intel and Advanced Micro Devices. "We believe acquiring these assets will enhance the current and future products we are developing and expect them to contribute to future generations of Sun's microprocessor technology which will in turn drive additional differentiation for Sun's Systems products," said Dana Lengkeek, a Sun spokeswoman.

Related Story: Sun buys processor startup Montalvo Systems

Cisco and Nuova

Buyer: Cisco

Acquisition: Nuova, a switch start-up already 80% owned by Cisco and formed by several ex-Cisco execs

When announced: April

Price: The maximum potential payout for Nuova could reach $678 million based on the revenue of Nuova products over three measurement periods.

Why: Provides Cisco with technology for data center switches that include a unified switching fabric that supports Fibre Channel over Ethernet (FCoE), Data Center Ethernet and virtualization technologies.

Related story: Cisco acquires Nuova, unveils new data center switch

EMC and Iomega

Buyer: EMC

Acquisition: Iomega, storage peripherals maker

When announced: April

Price: $213 million

Why: EMC CEO Joe Tucci said in a statement that his company's acquisition will be a key part of its strategy to expand into the consumer and small business markets. Iomega's products include NAS systems, Zip drives and data recovery services.

Related story: EMC to acquire Iomega

Nimsoft and Indicative

Buyer: Nimsoft, vendor of service-level management software

Acquisition: Indicative Software, a maker of business service management software

When announced: April

Price: Undisclosed, cash and stock

Why: To deliver a more complete performance and availability management offering. Company officials say the firms complement each other in that one's software is agentless, the other agent-based; one company is mid-market focused, the other targets large scale rollouts.

Related story: Nimsoft, Indicative join forces to take on the Big Four

IBM and Encenuate

Buyer: IBM

Acquisition: Encenuate, vendor of single sign-on, strong authentication and secure remote access products

When announced: March

Price: Undisclosed

Why: IBM will add Encenuate's single sign-on technology to its Tivoli line of identity and access management products.

Related story: IBM buys single sign-on technology for Tivoli

Microsoft and Kidaro

Buyer: Microsoft

Acquisition: Kidaro, maker of desktop virtualization software

When announced: March

Price: Undisclosed

Why: Plans to integrate Kidaro's technology into the Microsoft Desktop Optimization Pack for Software Assurance. Microsoft expects that the software will help accelerate migration to Windows Vista because it can minimize compatibility issues between applications and the OS.

Related story: Microsoft acquires desktop virtualization firm Kidaro

EMC and Infra

Buyer: EMC

Acquisition: Infra, a privately held maker of help desk and IT service management software that has its roots in Australia

When announced: March

Price: Undisclosed

Why: EMC says the deal will augment its "closed-loop service orchestration" strategy, part of its overall data center automation scheme.

Related stories:
EMC acquires ITIL software maker

EMC and Pi

Buyer: EMC

Acquisition: Pi, a Seattle-based maker of software and services that help users keep track of their personal data

Announced: February

Price: Undisclosed, but all cash

Why: Better enable EMC to handle the growing amount of personal data people need managed, and furthers the company's cloud computing efforts. To boot, ex-Microsoft bigwig and Pi CEO Paul Maritz gets brought into EMC fold.

Related: EMC buys Pi to round out cloud computing unit

Novell and PlateSpin

Buyer: Novell

Acquisition: PlateSpin, a maker of technologies that improve server consolidation, speed hardware migration, optimize disaster recovery initiatives and manage server virtualization across data centers.

Announced: February 25, 2008

Price: $205 million all-cash deal

Why: Novell officials say PlateSpin's technology will provide Novell with server consolidation, disaster recovery and workload automation tools to build out its own heterogeneous, platform-agnostic data center optimization and automation technologies. The software will work alongside Novell's ZENworks management suite to provide customers with automated capabilities around migrating and managing both physical and virtual servers in enterprise data centers, Novell says.

Related story: Novell bids $205 million for virtualization management firm PlateSpin

Novell and SiteScape

Buyer: Novell

Acquisition: SiteScape, which develops workgroup collaboration tools, including threaded discussion, document sharing, workflow, wikis, blogs and integration with real-time tools such as voice and Web conferencing.

Announced: February

Price: Undisclosed, but Novell says it was an all-cash deal.

Why: Novell is building out its collaboration wares and integrating new tools with its GroupWise platform, including social networking, voice and conferencing.

Related story: Novell acquires open source collaboration vendor

Sun and Innotek

Buyer: Sun

Acquisition: Innotek, an open source desktop virtualization company

Announced: February

Price: Undisclosed

Why: Sun officials say Innotek fills a gap in its virtualization portfolio, with a product that can comepte against desktop virtualization tools from VMware and Parallels. Sun also hopes Innotek's VirtualBox application will drive developers and data center managers toward Sun's other virtualization products.

Related: Sun buys open source desktop virtualization vendor

Yahoo and Maven

Buyer: Yahoo

Acquisition: Maven -- Maven prodiveds media companies including Fox News, CBS Sports, Sony BMG a platform to manage, distribute and earn advertising revenue from their online video content

Announced: February

Price: $160 million

Why: Yahoo hopes to boost its video advertising capabilities.

Related: Yahoo buys Maven for $160 million

Microsoft and Danger

Buyer: Microsoft

Acquisition: Danger, developer of mobile device software and services, such as those for T-Mobile's Sidekick device

Announced: February

Price: Undisclosed

Why: Microsoft is looking to boost its presence in the mobile consumer market and expects to integrate Danger technology with offerings such as MSN and Xbox

Related: Microsoft buys mobile software company Danger

Nokia and Trolltech

Buyer: Nokia

Acquisition: Trolltech, a Norwegian developer of a framework used to build user interfaces for mobile and embedded devices.

Announced: January

Price: $153 million

Why: Nokia hopes to use Trolltech's expertise to improve the interfaces on its mobile devices.

Related: Nokia to buy software developer Trolltech for $153M

Microsoft acquires Calista

Buyer: Microsoft

Acquisition: Calista Technologies, graphics technology for virtualization

Announced: January

Price: Undisclosed

Why: The companies say: "Calista's software improves the end-user experience of 3D and multimedia delivery for Microsoft multimedia applications, virtualized desktop deployments, and server-hosted virtualized desktops or applications using Windows Terminal Services."

Related stories: Microsoft acquires Calista | Microsoft steps up assault on virtualization

Ciena and World Wide Packets

Buyer: Ciena

Acquisition: World Wide Packets, maker of switches and software used by carriers to provide Ethernet services

When: January

Price: $290 million

Why: Bolsters Ciena's collection of products in the growing carrier Ethernet market.

Related story: Ciena to acquire World Wide Packets

Oracle and Captovation

Buyer: Oracle

Acquisition: Captovation, document capture company

Announced: January

Price: Undisclosed

Why: Software will be plugged into Oracle's existing content-management suite. In a letter to customers, an Oracle senior vice president said that Captovation's technology will help customers deal with regulatory requirements for auditing processes and save them money.

Related: Oracle buys document-capture vendor Captovation

IT Buyer's Guide: Compare the vendors this new combo will have to compete with .

Sun and MySQL

Buyer: Sun

Acquisition: MySQL, Swedish open source database vendor

When announced: January

Price: $1 billion

Why: Give Sun a strong presence in the $15 billion database market, further its support for open source and software-as-a-service.

Related story: Sun brilliant for MySQL purchase | Sun to acquire MySQL for $1 billion

Arbor Networks and Ellacoya

Buyer: Arbor, a network security company

Acquisition: Ellacoya, a provider of broadband optimization products

Announced: January

Price: Undisclosed

Why: The acquisition allows Arbor to take advantage of an increased focus on traffic and service management by broadband providers.

Related story: Arbor Networks buys Ellacoya

Oracle and BEA Systems

Buyer: Oracle

Acquisition: BEA, middleware vendor

When announced: January

Price: $8.5 billion

Why: Boost Oracle's Fusion line of middleware and pave way for customers moving to service-oriented architectures.

Related story: BEA stares down Oracle, gets its price | Oracle to buy BEA Systems for $8.5 billion

Aruba and AirWave

Buyer: Aruba Networks, maker of security mobility products for the enterprise

Acquisition: AirWave, wireless LAN management vendor

Announced: January

Price: $37 million

Why: Gives Aruba one of the few WLAN management applications that can manage different brands of equipment, and one of even fewer that can manage different types of wireless networks including mesh and WiMAX.

Related story: Aruba acquires WLAN management vendor AirWave

Buyer's Guide: Compare the vendors this new combo will have to compete with .

Double-Take and TimeSpring

Buyer: Double-Take, replication software provider

Acquisition: TimeSpring, continuous data protection product vendor

When announced: January

Price: $8.3 million

Why: By combining CDP with replication you get improved data protection with the ability to roll back your server's data to any specific point in time which could be just before a system crash or virus infection (Source: TechWorld)

Related story: Double-Take snaps up TimeSpring

Buyer's Guide: Compare the vendors this new combo will have to compete with .

Network Appliance and Onaro

Buyer: Network Appliance

Acquisition: Onaro, a storage management company

When announced: January

Price: Undisclosed

Why: NetApp says Onaro's products are complementary to its existing offerings, which include its V-Series virtualization systems; ReplicatorX data recovery and replication software; and its Decru DataFort storage encryption appliances.

Related story: NetApp to buy Onaro to boost storage management

Buyer's Guide: Compare the vendors this new combo will have to compete with .

Microsoft and Fast Search & Transfer

Buyer: Microsoft

Acquisition: Fast Search & Transfer, Norwegian enterprise search vendor

Announced: January

Price: $1.2 billion

Why: As Jeff Raikes, president of Microsoft's business division, said in a press conference: "Microsoft had the tools to search millions of documents but not billions of documents."

Related stories: FAQ: What does Microsoft's latest move in enterprise search mean? | Microsoft's bid for FAST bolsters enterprise search

Nokia Siemens Networks and Apertio

Buyer: Nokia Siemens

Acquisition: Apertio, which specializes in management applications for network operators

When announced: January

Price: $205 million

Why: The management and consolidation of subscriber data is becoming more important, particularly as operators offer "converged" services, the term for offerings that combine mobile, fixed-line and Internet-based services, the companies said.

Related story: Nokia Siemens to buy Apertio for $205 million

IBM and XIV

Buyer: IBM

Acquisition: XIV, an Israeli SAN product maker

When announced: January

Price: Undisclosed, though estimated in Israeli press reports to be between $300 million and $350 million.

Why: XIV's Nextra products offer self-healing, self-tuning and dynamic scaling capabilities that IBM says will enable it to better address demand for high-performance storage for digital archives, digital media and Web 2.0 applications.

Related stories: IBM buys Israeli storage startup XIV | IBM enlists former EMC engineering head to help win storage wars

What do YOU think?

We want to hear from YOU about these deals. Love 'em or hate 'em? Do they spell good or bad news for the industry?