CA Spins Off Ingres as Independent Company

CA has spun off its recently open-sourced database, Ingres, putting it in the hands of a private equity firm.

CA on Monday announced it has spun off its recently open-sourced database, Ingres, putting it in the hands of Garnett & Helfrich Capital, a private equity firm.

Computer Associates International Inc. released code for its Ingres Enterprise Relational Database in May 2004.

It followed that move by pitching a $1 million challenge to spur developers into creating tools to migrate from other databases.

CA divested its Ingres open-source database unit, which will now be an independent corporate entity called Ingres Corp. Garnett & Helfrich will now be the majority shareholder in the new corporation, and CA will retain an ownership stake.

CA will also have the right to appoint a member to Ingres board of directors and intends to work with Ingres on product development, industry partnerships and marketing.

CA said in a statement that as an independent entity, Ingres will focus on the development dynamics and business opportunities of the open-source market.

/zimages/1/28571.gifClick here to read about CA using Ingres to take on Oracle.

For its part, CA will focus on its core markets, including systems and security management for the enterprise.

"This partnership with Garnett & Helfrich represents a step toward rationalizing CAs solutions portfolio and provides Ingres with the dedicated resources and focus to ensure its future success," said John A. Swainson, president and CEO of CA, in a statement.

"It also provides CA with favorable economics, and we believe it will assure continued support for CAs current customers and position Ingres for leadership in the business open-source database market."

Swainson said that the move is part of the companys push to figure out where to invest its money.

"During the past year, CA has been looking closely at its solutions portfolio and deciding how to best focus investment dollars on growth areas," he said.

"Part of that program has been aimed at internal development, part on making key acquisitions and the last part on finding ways to unlock the value of solutions areas that, while not strategic to CAs core business, have significant potential in the marketplace.

"Our partnership with Garnett & Helfrich will bring the focus and investment required to unlock the value of the Ingres solution."

For now, the company will be headed up by Terry Garnett, managing director of Garnett & Helfrich. He will serve as interim CEO and chairman of the board of directors.

He said in CAs statement that with Ingres as an independent company, it stands a good chance of attracting top talent, capitalizing on the market momentum of open source, evolving the technology and setting up strategic partnerships.

"Open-source software is being widely embraced by enterprise IT organizations seeking to optimize their flexibility, time-to-innovation and return on technology investments," Garnett said in the statement.

Before forming Garnett & Helfrich with his partner, David Helfrich, in 2003, Garnett spent eight years with Venrock Associates, where he was an early investor in Siebel, Check Point Software, Niku, Neoforma and Neon Software.

He was also involved in forming and funding CrossWorlds Software with his wife, Katrina Garnett, CrossWorlds founder and CEO. CrossWorlds went public in 2000 and was acquired by IBM in 2001.

Prior to Venrock, Mr. Garnett served as senior vice president of Worldwide Marketing and Business Development with Oracle Corp., reporting to Larry Ellison, in addition to being a member of the Executive Management Committee.

Ingres has a long and venerable history. It began as an early RDBMS at the University of California at Berkeley 30 years ago.

Other members of the executive team include Dave Dargo as senior vice president, strategy and chief technology officer; Emma McGrattan, senior vice president of engineering; Andy Albritten, senior vice president of support and services; and Dev Mukherjee, chief marketing officer and senior vice president of business development.

Dargo comes to the role after being a senior partner with the Olliance Group, where he consulted on the subject of open-source technologies, advising startups and venture capital firms. Before that, Dargo spent 15 years with Oracle, where he established Oracles Linux Program Office.

For her part, before coming to Ingres, McGrattan held a position with CA that was similar to the engineering role she now takes on, being responsible for the Ingres family of relational database management products. She joined CA in 1994 when it acquired The ASK Group.

At Ingres McGrattan will be responsible for the development and architecture of the Ingres database and associated products and technologies.

Shell manage the worldwide engineering, test and quality assurance teams located in California, New York and the United Kingdom.

Allbritten was most recently with Oracle as group vice president, Support Services and at PeopleSoft as managing director, group vice president, Support Services, Worldwide Sales & Operations.

Allbritten was responsible for the PeopleSofts Worldwide Customer Services organization, the maintenance line of business and tiered services programs, which together accounted for half of PeopleSofts annual revenue.

At Ingres, Allbritten will be in charge of providing technical support, access to the latest product enhancements and upgrades, and education.

Dev Mukherjee will lead the companys marketing and business development functions. Mukherjee was most recently general manager of Marketing for Microsofts Windows Server System brand, which includes Windows Server OS, Exchange Server, SQL Server and Biztalk Server.

At Ingres, Mukherjee will be responsible for the marketing strategy, the worldwide corporate marketing function for the brand and integrated communications, product management and business development.

CA acquired Ingres in 1994 when it purchased the ASK Group. The initial code base was available under a version of the BSD license. It became a commercial database in the mid-1980s.

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