Cleversafe: IBM’s Latest Acquisition


Oct. 8 2015, Published 8:49 p.m. ET

IBM announced Cleversafe acquisition

IBM (IBM) continues to follow its acquisition strategy. In 2015, to date, IBM has made nine acquisitions including Cleversafe. On October 5, 2015, it was announced that data storage player Cleversafe will become the next addition to IBM’s acquisition portfolio. Financial details of the deal were not disclosed. Please read IBM chose the acquisition route for the 2015 roadmap milestone to find out more.

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Cleversafe’s software, while meeting the requirements of data-intensive workloads delivered through the cloud, enables companies to store and manage a vast amount of data efficiently. Cleversafe’s customers include Shutterfly (SFLY), which uses it for photo storage, and Sky Storage, which uses it for media storage. Shutterfly offers free online photo and image storage space.

IDC names Cleversafe an object-storage market leader

Founded in 2004, Cleversafe has earned $100 million to date. According to the IDC MarketScape vendor assessment of object-based storage providers, and as the diagram above shows, Cleversafe and Scality were ranked as two market leaders in 2013 and 2014.

Commenting on Cleversafe’s categorization as a market leader, IDC’s program director for enterprise servers and software Ashish Nadkarni stated, “Cleversafe’s company strategy to offer its platform both as software designed to run on standard servers as well as its own storage appliances is a good match for the market’s direction.” Scality, another startup in the leaders’ category, is aiming for an IPO (initial public offering) in 2017 after the company recently raised $45 million in D-round funding in August 2015.

IDC estimates the object storage market will grow at a CAGR (compound annual growth rate) of 27% in the next four years. Though EMC (EMC) placed in the IDC MarketScape “Leaders” category, it’s apparent that the company is on the verge of falling into the “Major Players” category, along with Red Hat (RHT) and NetApp (NTAP).

To gain exposure to IBM, you could consider investing in the iShares U.S. Technology ETF (IYW). IYW invests about 4.2% of its holdings in IBM.


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