Big Blue is to buy marketing software outfit Unica Corp for $480m, or $21 per share.
The acquisition is a clear signal that IBM hopes to shoulder its way into the lucrative ad software field.
In the past few months IBM has been making noises about scooping up companies that will help Big Blue slip into the software and services game. Marketing and ad buys are its current preoccupation.
Unica, which produces marketing and brand campaigns for clients that include, eBay, US Cellular, Monster and Best Buy, will be folded into IBM’s software solution’s wing of the business.
Recently IBM hoovered up Coremetrics and AT&T’s Sterling Commerce.
“This expanding portfolio, combined with IBM’s WebSphere Commerce software aims to help companies automate, manage, and accelerate core business processes across marketing, demand generation, sales, order processing and fulfillment,” said the company in a statement.
IBM plans to splurge $20bn on such buyouts over the next five years. ®