IBM to Purchase Initiate Systems

IBM has signed a definitive agreement to acquire Initiate Systems, a provider of data integrity software for information sharing among healthcare and government organizations. The announcement of the acquisition "marks a significant expansion of IBM's ability to help clients integrate information from hundreds of sources," Arvind Krishna, general manager of IBM's Information Management Software division, said during a teleconference detailing the acquisition.

Initiate Systems is a privately held company based in Chicago, Ill., with customers around the world. This purchase marks the 30th acquisition IBM has made to advance its capabilities in information and analytics. Financial details were not disclosed.

Healthcare organizations and governments around the world today are embarking on new initiatives to improve healthcare and citizen safety, according to IBM. In healthcare, this means finding ways to simultaneously improve health outcomes and efficiency of care. In government, this means providing better services to citizens in a more cost effective manner by combining information from multiple agencies such as child welfare and veterans' programs. In the U.S., for example, there is $36 billion in government stimulus funds to facilitate the adoption of electronic health records and health information networks, both solutions being places where Initiate plays strongly, says Krishna. The Chinese government is investing $124 billion in healthcare stimulus funds, and other countries are investing in healthcare as well, he adds. "Similarly, we are seeing government agencies of all sizes, planning initiatives aimed at improving the services to deliver to citizens, while trying to hold the line on costs."

A key requirement for all such initiatives is proper management and delivery of trusted and accurate information. "Initiate is already helping these clients provide a single view of information from multiple sources. Its software is in use at 2,400 healthcare sites, 40 health information exchanges, and multiple government health systems. Initiate also serves government agencies, large and small, around the world," Krishna notes.

Consistent with the company's strategy, IBM will continue to support and enhance Initiate's technologies while helping clients take advantage of the broader IBM portfolio. Customers are expected to benefit from additional information management capabilities including: clinical analytics, information discovery and transformation and data warehousing and business intelligence.

IBM's acquisition of Initiate extends the company's business analytics strategy, including the range of offerings available through IBM's recently-announced Business Analytics and Optimization Consulting organization which includes a team of 4,000 consultants, a network of analytics solution centers, and is backed by an overall investment of more than $10 billion in organic growth and acquisitions.

The transaction is subject to customary closing conditions and regulatory clearance and is expected to close in the first quarter of 2010. IBM intends to integrate the Initiate organization with its Information Management business after the closing.

For more information, visit the IBM website.