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IBM is acquiring DBaaS provider Cloudant for an undisclosed sum

IBM is acquiring DBaaS provider Cloudant for an undisclosed sum

In another strategic acquisition for the enterprise IT giant, IBM announced Monday that it has reached an agreement to acquire database as a service specialist Cloudant for an undisclosed sum. IBM said the acquisition will help the company continue its advance in the big data analytics space.

Cloudant was formed in 2008 by a few MIT particle physicists who banded together to solve gargantuan data storage and processing problems (multi-petabyte sized datasets) brought about by the constant stream of data spewing out from the Large Hadron Collider.

The team, which was experienced in large distributed data systems, saw that the problems being faced by particle physicists weren’t unlike those being felt in other sectors. Catering to growing demand to make sense of all that data in a range of verticals, the founders built a distributed, fault tolerant NoSQL data layer on top of Apache CouchDB, and offered it as a service largely focused on mobile and web app-generated data.

“IBM has a rich history in the field of data management, and one that will truly differentiate Cloudant’s technology in the marketplace,” said Cloudant’s chief technology officer and co-founder Adam Kocoloski.

“Joining IBM allows Cloudant to innovate faster than ever before, and IBM’s track record in open source software gives us complete confidence in our ongoing collaboration with the Apache CouchDB project.”

The acquisition will give IBM a new avenue to tap into the big data and database as a service frenzies. The company plans to host Cloudant on SoftLayer, the infrastructure as a service provider IBM acquired last year, and tie it into its existing analytics suite and mobile app development platform.

“IBM is leading the charge in helping its clients take advantage of big data, cloud and mobile,” said Sean Poulley, vice president, databases & data warehousing at IBM. “Cloudant sits squarely at the nexus of these three key transformational areas and enables clients to rapidly deliver an entirely new level of innovative, engaging and data-rich apps to the marketplace.”

“Cloudant’s NoSQL expertise, combined with IBM’s enterprise reliability and resources, adds data layer services to the IBM portfolio that others can’t match,” added Derek Schoettle, Cloudant’s chief executive officer.

News of the acquisition arrives as the database as a service market starts to heat up. A 451Research survey including responses from over 275 senior database administrators conducted in August last year suggests over a third expect to use database as a service offerings this year.

The firm expects revenue to grow 81 per cent between 2013 and 2016 to reach $1.8bn. And while overall adoption is expected to rise, newer players in the space are eating into the market share of incumbents. By acquiring Cloudant, IBM is making sure it keeps ahead of the trend that has so far seen other enterprise IT giants – Oracle, for instance – have increasingly seen their position in this market challenged.

@BizCloud
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