Ascential Buys Vality TechnologyAscential Buys Vality Technology
Previously owned by Informix, Ascential was spun off as a separate company last year--with lots of cash to spend on acquisitions--after IBM bought Informix.
March 12, 2002
In a move to add data-quality management to its data-integration product line, Ascential Software Corp. is acquiring privately held Vality Technology Inc. for approximately $92 million in cash. The companies expect to complete the deal next month.
Ascential in Westboro, Mass., sells data extraction, transformation, and loading software for building data warehouses and transferring information between disparate data sources. Previously owned by Informix Corp., Ascential was spun off as a separate company last year--with lots of cash to spend on acquisitions--after IBM bought Informix. In November, Ascential spent $46 million in cash to buy Torrent Systems, a developer of parallel-processing infrastructure software for building highly scalable data warehouses. The addition of Vality's data-quality-management software will help Ascential extend the scope of its DataStage data-integration product suite. Companies are increasingly adopting software such as DataStage for customer-relationship management applications such as marketing and call-center tasks, and for customer data analysis. Those applications require consistent data. "CRM is really driving this. We see data-quality initiatives being launched in advance of CRM projects," Meta Group analyst Doug Laney says. Although Ascential says Vality's Integrity already works with DataStage because of an existing relationship between the vendors, analysts say the two technologies need to be integrated even more tightly. "The real onus is on them to make the whole exceed the sum of the parts," Gartner analyst Ted Friedman says. Ascential's move is similar to Sagent Technology Inc.'s buyout of Qualitative Marketing Software Inc. in January 2000 and SAS Institute Inc.'s acquisition of DataFlux Corp. in June 2000. Boston-based Vality had sales of $21.2 million in 2001 and expected sales of $25 million this year. Ascential expects Vality to contribute $15 million to $20 million to its sales this year and $30 million in 2003.
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