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IBM to Acquire Lombardi

IBM has entered a definitive agreement to acquire business process management (BPM) software and services firm Lombardi.

Armonk, N.Y.-based IBM announced on Wednesday that it has signed an agreement to acquire Lombardi, an Austin, Texas-based business process management software and services provider.

IBM says that Lombardi's product portfolio offers capabilities that complement the recent product upgrades and new product announcements in IBM's WebSphere portfolio. The BPM vendor's collaborative, graphical approach to process application development based on a WebSphere infrastructure will help extend IBM's customizable, role-based capabilities to empower business users to rapidly effect change in their businesses, according to a press release.

"Any discussion on business improvement inevitably leads to improving the processes that are at the heart of every company," Craig Hayman, general manager, IBM Application and Integration Middleware, said in the release. "Recognizing this, IBM has strengthened its presence and investments in business process and integration software to meet these growing client demands. Lombardi fills out our company's portfolio in this key area."

"Our shared vision has been to deliver technology that helps companies improve their effectiveness by better managing the processes that keep their businesses running," added Rod Favaron, CEO, Lombardi. "Becoming part of the IBM family will take this vision to a higher level and enable us to explore new opportunities together in product development, integration and go-to-market strategies."

Under the agreement, the investments of clients and partners in existing IBM and Lombardi technologies will be preserved. Lombardi will be integrated into IBM following regulatory approvals and customary closing conditions.

IBM says that Lombardi has strong customer bases in industries such as financial services, government, healthcare, insurance, life sciences, manufacturing, retail, and telecommunications industries.

Donald Light, a senior analyst in Boston-based consulting firm Celent's insurance practice, says that the acquisition marks an important step forward in IBM's continuing build-out of its middleware and infrastructure business and BPM suite. "For years, Lombardi has been one of the leading BPM providers, with a strong presence in the insurance industry," Light says. "Celent has seen a heightened interest in BPM among midsize and large insurers in the past 18 months, as they examine wrap-and-extend alternatives to ripping and replacing their core systems. BPM solutions can also play an important orchestration role within an insurer's SOA strategy."

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