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IBM Sells U2 to Rocket Software


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IBM last week announced plans to sell its worldwide U2 database and tools assets to Rocket Software, a global software development firm, based in Newton, Mass. "The entire U2 team worldwide is moving from IBM to Rocket," Susie Siegesmund, director, IBM U2 Data Servers and Tools, IBM Information Management Software, tells 5 Minute Briefing, reiterating sentiments expressed in a letter last week to customers, in which she assured them that the change of ownership will be a benefit to U2's product line as well as customers and business partners and will not affect relationships with the U2 business.

Explaining Rocket Software's interest in the U2 family of products, Siegesmund notes that Rocket did not have a database. "Between the low total cost of ownership, the minimum amount of database administration if any, depending on the size of your application, the cheaper hardware, we've got a huge story to tell in terms of low total cost of ownership," says Siegesmund. "You combine that with the ease of development and the speed to market, and ease of customization of the products and you find that, given today's marketplace where people are trying to save money on implementation of solutions, and the opportunity to go into the emerging markets like the BRIC countries and other places that don't have the kind of infrastructure that supports a) a lot of database administrators, b) huge computer installations, and c) the affordability, we think we are just perfectly poised for today's marketplace to grow the U2 business, to get brand-new people building brand-new applications."

For example, Siegesmund tells 5 Minute Briefing, "We had one partner in Japan that found us on their own and built an application and got it to market in 3 months. That says something about the technology. It is an ASP web-based application and they were attracted to our data servers because of how similar they are to XML. That is a real key element. IBM has been a great place to be for the technology and in all of the development we have done over the last 8 years, in every single release you will find either the word web or something about XML as part of that release."

Rocket builds and services enterprise infrastructure products for OEMs, networks and software companies and enterprises. The company's current lines of business complement and extend OEM offerings in the areas of business intelligence, storage, networks and telecom, terminal emulation and FTP, integration, modernization and SOA, database, and security. Rocket has OEM relationships and technology partnerships with IBM, EMC, HP, and others.

Siegesmund said the acquisition is expected to close at the end of this month, subject to regulatory approval.

For more information about Rocket Software, go here.


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