Boosting its e-business software holdings, IBM on Tuesday said it will buy CrossWorlds Software, a vendor of enterprise application integration software, for about $129 million in cash.
IBM plans to merge CrossWorlds business operations and 350 employees into IBMs existing business integration software division, led by General Manager Ambuj Goyal. In addition, IBM Global Services will include CrossWorlds software services capability in its worldwide enterprise application integration practice.
The deal is expected to be complete in the first quarter of 2002, after shareholder and regulatory approval.
CrossWorlds, based in Burlingame, Calif., has customers that include Caterpillar, Siemens and Whirlpool. The companys software helps companies automate business processes that integrate multiple applications. For example, it can link a customer relationship management system with enterprise resource planning applications.
IBM said the acquisition extends its middleware reach and meets the needs of customers that require both an application server - such as IBMs WebSphere family - and enterprise application integration software.
"CrossWorlds increases our strength in integration software for a wide range of industries - helping companies solve specific business-process integration problems across the range of integration points unique to their industry," said Steve Mills, head of IBM Software, in a statement.
Enterprise application integration software is the fastest-growing segment of e-business software, and will grow 25 percent a year to reach $4 billion by 2005, according to market research firm IDC. Other providers of enterprise application integration middleware include SeeBeyond Technology, Vitria Technology and webMethods.
IBM and CrossWorlds had an existing partnership, through which CrossWorlds software was integrated with IBMs WebSphere middleware products.