IBM Buys Integration Software Maker

IBM acquired directory integration software maker Metamerge, in hopes of enhancing its integration middleware.

IBM Corp. Tuesday acquired the Norweigan company Metamerge to add directory integration capabilities to its middleware strategy.

IBM said it has acquired all shares of Metamerge, a provider of directory integration software, in a private acquisition. IBM said the Oslo, Norway, company is privately held and the company did not disclose financial details of the deal.

Ambuj Goyal, general manager of solutions and strategy for IBMs Software Group, said the Metamerge acquisition is IBMs second integration software acquisition in six months -- IBM bought CrossWorlds in January to add its application integration capabilities to the companys middleware product line.

IBM acquired Metamerge to add directory integration to its portfolio of software that helps customers integrate all aspects of their e-business operations -- including data, applications, business processes and portals. Metamerge will be integrated immediately into IBM Software Group, and Metamerge products are available now from IBM.

"Metamerge will be quickly integrated into IBM software business," Goyal said. "Just like our big play in databases and in application servers, we are playing for first place in integration middleware."

Directory integration aggregates directory information, which is stored across both directories and databases from multiple software vendors and running across a variety of operating systems. Metamerge specializes in directory integration software, including metadirectory tools, and is a key enabler for IBM security products. Goyal said Metamerge supports directory offerings from Microsoft Corp., Sun Microsystems Inc. and Novell.

According to Gartner Dataquest Inc., more than 70 percent of companies with more than 1,000 desktops will implement metadirectory technology by 2005. Metadirectories connect data from disparate sources across an organization.

The comprehensive and accurate directory infrastructure created by Metamerge will be a key integration enabler across IBMs four software brands - WebSphere, DB2, Lotus and Tivoli, Goyal said.

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