IBM Continues To Expand Smarter Commerce Effort With Emptoris Acquisition

IBM's "Smarter Commerce" initiative

The news comes one week after IBM announced that it would acquire DemandTec, a supplier of sales and marketing analysis software, that's also bolstering the Smarter Commerce effort.

IBM did not disclose the financial details of the Emptoris acquisition, which it expects to complete sometime in the first quarter of 2012.

Based in Burlington, Mass., Emptoris offers cloud-based and on-premise software for analyzing procurement and supply chain operations, including spending, supplier and contract management. Procurement and sourcing managers use the applications to reduce sourcing costs and risks, according to IBM.

IBM launched its Smarter Commerce initiative earlier this year to capitalize on what the company sees as a $20 billion market opportunity. The Emptoris applications will fill out IBM's capabilities on the "buy" side of the Smarter Commerce portfolio, complementing the business-to-business integration and supply chain management capabilities IBM acquired last year when it bought Sterling Commerce.

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"Procurement is being asked to show how it can deliver value to the organization. Adding Emptoris strengthens the comprehensive capabilities we deliver and enables IBM to meet the specific needs of chief procurement officers," said Craig Hayman, IBM general manager of industry solutions, in a statement.

The Emptoris acquisition also complements IBM's supply chain management business process outsourcing services offered through IBM's Global Process Services organization.