IBM, SPSS Clear Antitrust Hurdle in $1.2B Acquisition

The federal waiting period to raise antitrust concerns around IBM's proposed $1.2 billion acquisition of predictive analytic software maker SPSS passed Sept. 9, removing a significant roadblock to the deal. The next phase will come Oct. 2, when SPSS shareholders are scheduled to vote on the deal.

Download the authoritative guide: Big Data: Mining Data for Revenue

IBM's proposed $1.2 billion acquisition of predictive analytic software maker SPSS cleared a significant hurdle Sept. 9, when the waiting period for an antitrust review of the deal expired.

The next step is for SPSS investors to vote on the deal. The shareholders meeting is set for Oct. 2 in Chicago.

The two companies on July 28 announced the deal, which will enable IBM to add more predictive analysis capabilities to its Information on Demand software.

Adding SPSS as a subsidiary will enable IBM to offer customers tools to more deeply analyze business data and make decisions based on the analysis. The two have been longtime partners.

IDC is predicting a healthy market for business analytic software, with spending on the technology to grow 4 percent this year over 2008.

IBM has spent the past few years building up its software business through acquisitions such as Cognos in 2007, which bolstered its business intelligence capabilities. The moves are centered around helping businesses better understand the massive amounts of data they collect and to use that information to improve business plans and outcomes.

They also put IBM in line to compete more directly with the likes of Oracle, SAS and SAP in the predictive analytic software space.