Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed, but IBM said Cast Iron’s approximately 75 employees would join the company. Privately held Cast Iron Systems is based in Mountain View, Calif.
IBM expects the global market for cloud computing technologies to grow at a compound annual rate of 28 percent from $47 billion in 2008 to $126 billion in 2012.
But difficulties linking Software-as-a-Service applications with on-premise systems are a potential hurdle to broader adoption of cloud computing. Such integration work can be time consuming and a drain on IT development resources.
"IBM's acquisition of Cast Iron directly targets the largest customer pain point associated with cloud computing," said a report from Technology Business Research, pointing to a TBR cloud-adoption study in which 45 percent of non-cloud adopters cited integration as the main problem.
IBM said the acquisition would broaden the range of cloud computing services it can offer its customers, particularly those adopting a hybrid cloud model that combines data from on-premise systems with information generated by private and public cloud systems.
"For IT vendors, the business opportunity is not only selling cloud services to the majority of the market that has yet to adopt [cloud], but also providing the solutions that will entice those customers to adopt," the TBR report said.