IBM to Acquire BLADE Network Technologies

IBM announced it has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire BLADE Network Technologies (BLADE), a privately held company based in Santa Clara, CA. BLADE specializes in software and devices that route data and transactions to and from servers. The acquisition is anticipated to close in the fourth quarter of 2010, subject to the satisfaction of customary closing conditions and applicable regulatory reviews. Financial terms were not disclosed.

BLADE provides blade server and top-of-rack switches as well as software to virtualize and manage cloud computing and other workloads. IBM says it has worked closely with BLADE since 2002, and more than 50% of IBM System x BladeCenters currently attach to or use BLADE products. BLADE also provide software that enables servers to more closely integrate with the network so that clients can deploy thousands of virtual machines to run large application workloads in the cloud and reduce complexity through simplified management.

With BLADE, IBM says, it can drive innovation at the systems networking level to enable clients to speed the delivery of key information from system to system -- for workloads such as analytics and cloud computing. Today, networks are made up of different layers, each one designed to pass information up and down to the next layer as data is processed. BLADE's switches will be brought closer to IBM systems and then pass information to the core networking layer, optimizing systems performance.

"BLADE will help IBM better integrate networks with its systems, optimizing them for workloads that require high-speed and low-latency performance such as cloud computing and business analytics," says Brian Truskowski, general manager for IBM System Storage and Networking. "For example, faster data transport enables faster decisions important for analytics workloads."

For more information on BLADE, go here.

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