IBM completes Agile 3 acquisition

International Business Machines (IBM) recently closed the acquisition of cybersecurity firm Agile 3 Solutions. Although IBM didn’t reveal the financial details of the transaction, the reason behind the move is obvious: strengthening the company’s newer businesses that it calls Strategic Imperatives.

Other than security, IBM’s Strategic Imperatives include data analytics, enterprise mobility, and cloud computing. The company said its Strategic Imperatives segment increased 11% year-over-year in 4Q16, leading to revenues of $9.5 billion. IBM generated total revenues of $21.8 billion, which shows that newer businesses currently contribute only a small fraction of the company’s top line.

IBM Moves to Bolster Its Strategic Imperatives

Raising the profile of the Strategic Imperatives unit

However, IBM wants future growth to come from strategic imperatives, which explains why the company has continued to invest in strengthening its newer operations. The acquisition of Agile 3 is part of those efforts.

Agile 3 software is used by senior executives to monitor and understand the security of sensitive data. As such, Agile 3 would be a bolt-on addition to IBM’s Data Security unit. Agile 3 becomes the 20th cybersecurity asset that IBM has acquired. IBM seeks to expand and strengthen its security assets against competitors such as Proofpoint (PFPT), FireEye (FEYE), and Cisco (CSCO).

Security and cloud

For cloud vendors such as IBM, security is also an important part of its presence, as companies moving to cloud environment cite security among their top priorities. IBM competes in the cloud against Amazon (AMZN), Microsoft (MSFT), and Oracle (ORCL). The company noted that its cloud revenues increased 33% in 4Q16.

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