Inside IBM's $1.3 Billion Kenexa Buy - InformationWeek

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Inside IBM's $1.3 Billion Kenexa Buy
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Deb Donston-Miller
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Deb Donston-Miller,
User Rank: Apprentice
8/27/2012 | 10:20:40 PM
re: Inside IBM's $1.3 Billion Kenexa Buy
This acquisition really makes sense, and continues the horse race in the enterprise social space among IBM, SAP, Salesforce.com, Oracle and others.

Deb Donston-Miller
Contributing Editor, The BrainYard
David F. Carr
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David F. Carr,
User Rank: Author
8/28/2012 | 2:29:10 PM
re: Inside IBM's $1.3 Billion Kenexa Buy
This morning I had a follow-up conversation with Alistair Rennie, general manager of social business for IBM, who wanted to clarify IBM's evolving acquisitions strategy. While I noted that IBM has a history of partnering rather than competing with application vendors like SAP, Rennie said what's shifting is really "the nature of applications themselves."

Using Geoffrey Moore's concept of systems of record vs. systems of engagement, IBM sees its investment opportunity in systems of engagement, which is where social software apps for engaging with consumers, employees, and partners fit.

"We have no desire to enter the ERP space or the core HR space -- we have some very productive and health relationships with a bunch of partners in that space," he said.

Kenexa's technology is in a category of product less focused on transactional HR than on engaging and understanding employees and potential employees, which is how it fits into the social graph of the business, Rennie said. "By bringing together the social graph and the business, we can enable a new category of applications."
NucleusResearchHP
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NucleusResearchHP,
User Rank: Apprentice
8/28/2012 | 10:05:46 PM
re: Inside IBM's $1.3 Billion Kenexa Buy
Although Rennie says he's not interested in ERP, there are plenty of CRM and service applications that are very much driven by the types of engagement and interaction that seem to drive IBM. I'm looking at any type of application where conversations occur or human performance is effectively measured as a potential IBM target going forward after this Kenexa acquisition. Should be interesting to see how the enterprise app vendors deal with IBM coming into all of their high margin areas in the name of Social Business.
David F. Carr
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David F. Carr,
User Rank: Author
8/28/2012 | 10:34:35 PM
re: Inside IBM's $1.3 Billion Kenexa Buy
Seems like they want to expand their app footprint, but are still sensitive about not pissing off too many partners.


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