IBM will acquire Lombardi, a privately held developer of business process management (BPM) software, for an undisclosed sum, IBM said Wednesday.
The acquisition will strengthen IBM's hand in the rapidly expanding market for BPM software, which market researcher IDC projects will grow 15 percent a year during the next four years from $1.7 billion in 2009 to $3.0 billion in 2013.
Lombardi will be integrated into IBM once the acquisition is completed, following regulatory approvals and other closing conditions, IBM said.
Companies are increasingly adopting BPM software as they try to improve their business processes and become more efficient in a tough economy. Last week BPM software developer Pegasystems inked a deal with systems integrator Capgemini, which will sell the Pegasystems product to help customers collect data from operational IT systems for analysis to better match corporate strategies with corporate execution.
IBM said BPM tools support such processes as product planning, supply chain execution, insurance claims processing, human resource management, procurement and IT services.
"Any discussion on business improvement inevitably leads to improving the processes that are at the heart of every company," said Craig Hayman, general manager of IBM application and integration middleware, in a statement. The Lombardi acquisition "fills out our company's portfolio of business process and integration software," he said.
The Lombardi application has long supported WebSphere, IBM's core middleware software. IBM said a number of customers, including Ford Motor Co., already use the two products together. IBM also said the Lombardi technology is complementary with the business rules management software IBM acquired last year when it bought ILOG for $340 million.
Lombardi, whose capabilities are more targeted at department-level business processes, has a strong presence in financial services, government, healthcare, insurance, life sciences, manufacturing, retail and telecommunications markets, IBM said.