Our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy have changed.

By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to the new Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.

IBM snaps up analytics firm for whopping 120% premium

chart_ws_stock_unicacorp.top.png By David Goldman, staff writer


NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) -- IBM agreed Friday to purchase software firm Unica for $480 million, offering a giant premium for the marketing analytics company.

In the all-cash transaction, Big Blue will pay $21 per share of Unica. That's a 120% boost on the stock's Thursday closing price of $9.55. Shares of Unica (UNCA) leapt $11.21 to $20.76 Friday morning, while IBM (IBM, Fortune 500) shares were mostly unchanged.

IBM said it bought Unica to add more personalized marketing services to its arsenal. Unica, based in Waltham, Mass., helps customers develop targeted campaigns, using analytics software that predicts customer preferences and behavior. The company has an impressive customer list that's 1,500 clients long, including Best Buy (BBY, Fortune 500), eBay (EBAY, Fortune 500), Monster (MWW), and US Cellular.

Though the deal sounds expensive, IBM has a pretty solid track record of making its purchases profitable. IBM plans to integrate Unica's 500 employees into its solutions and analytics team of 5,000 staff members.

The acquisition is part of IBM's plan to spend $20 billion on buying up companies through 2015. IBM said the Unica deal compliments two recent analytics firm acquisitions in the past few months, CoreMetrics and Sterling Commerce.

IBM has a habit of snapping up niche software makers to extend its deep software and services portfolio. With analytics firms like Unica, IBM can make a play at customers who would typically have gone to business software giant Oracle (ORCL, Fortune 500) or Hewlett-Packard's (HPQ, Fortune 500) EDS in years past. To top of page

Index Last Change % Change
Dow 18,432.24 -24.11 -0.13%
Nasdaq 5,162.13 7.15 0.14%
S&P 500 2,173.60 3.54 0.16%
Treasuries 1.46 -0.05 -3.51%
Data as of 10:31pm ET
Company Price Change % Change
KeyCorp 11.70 0.05 0.43%
Bank of America Corp... 14.49 -0.19 -1.29%
Ford Motor Co 12.66 -0.05 -0.39%
General Electric Co 31.14 -0.11 -0.35%
Chesapeake Energy Co... 5.42 0.23 4.43%
Data as of Jul 29
Sponsors

Sections

For the first time ever, Amazon and Facebook are more valuable than Berkshire Hathaway, the storied company run by legendary investor Warren Buffett. More

Venezuela's government issues a decree recently that makes it possible to force workers to work in the country's fields amid food shortages. More

Sara Mauskopf started Winnie to help parents find everything from parks to family-friendly restaurants. More

It's about to get harder for some luxury all-cash home buyers to hide their identity from the U.S. government. More