The largest software acquisition ever: IBM to buy Red Hat for $34B

This is a big deal for Linux business:

IBM announced today it would pay a record $34 billion in cash and debt to acquire enterprise open source provider Red Hat. This is the biggest software acquisition in history. It seems that IBM is buying Red Hat to become a hybrid cloud company.

  • Prior to the acquisition, Red Hat’s market capitalization stood at approximately $20.5 billion.
  • The acquisition is by far IBM’s largest deal ever


  1. Tomi Engdahl says:

    When big blue IBM is mixed with Red Hat, do we get soon Purple Hat Linux as the result?

  2. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Has open source won or lost ?

  3. Tomi Engdahl says:


  4. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Lora Kolodny / CNBC:
    IBM has agreed to acquire Red Hat in a deal valued at $34B, a 60%+ premium over Friday’s closing price; Red Hat will become part of IBM’s Hybrid Cloud division — IBM is acquiring Red Hat, a major distributor of open-source software and technology, in a deal valued around $34 billion, the companies announced on Sunday.

    IBM to acquire Red Hat in deal valued at $34 billion
    IBM announced plans to acquire Red Hat in a deal valued at about $34 billion.
    Prior to the acquisition, Red Hat’s market capitalization stood at approximately $20.5 billion.
    The acquisition is by far IBM’s largest deal ever, and the third-biggest in the history of U.S. tech.

  5. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Jonathan Shieber / TechCrunch:
    With its acquisition of Red Hat, IBM refocuses on its core strengths, rather than Watson, an AI push that was always more hype than reality — With its latest $34 billion acquisition of Red Hat, IBM may have found something more elementary than “Watson” to save its flagging business.

    Forget Watson, the Red Hat acquisition may be the thing that saves IBM

    With its latest $34 billion acquisition of Red Hat, IBM may have found something more elementary than “Watson” to save its flagging business.

    Though the acquisition of Red Hat is by no means a guaranteed victory for the Armonk, N.Y.-based computing company that has had more downs than ups over the five years, it seems to be a better bet for “Big Blue” than an artificial intelligence program that was always more hype than reality.

    Indeed, commentators are already noting that this may be a case where IBM finally hangs up the Watson hat and returns to the enterprise software and services business that has always been its core competency (albeit one that has been weighted far more heavily on consulting services — to the detriment of the company’s business).

  6. Tomi Engdahl says:

    IBM to Acquire Open Source Giant Red Hat for $34 Billion

    IBM Buys Software Company Red Hat for $34bn in Bid for Cloud Dominance

    IBM said Sunday it has reached a deal to buy open source software company Red Hat for $34 billion, among the biggest tech mergers in history which the computing giant said would enhance its cloud offerings.

    If approved it will be the third biggest tech merger in history, according to business news site CNBC. Red Hat said it was the biggest involving a software company.

    The acquisition of Red Hat is a game-changer. It changes everything about the cloud market,” said Ginni Rometty, IBM’s chairman, president and CEO.

    “IBM will become the world’s number one hybrid cloud provider, offering companies the only open cloud solution that will unlock the full value of the cloud for their businesses.”

    Hybrid cloud relates to the linking of public and private cloud platforms.

  7. Tomi Engdahl says:

    IBM to Acquire Red Hat for About $33 Billion

    Tech giant’s aim is to boost a cloud-computing business central to CEO Rometty’s effort to revive the company

  8. Tomi Engdahl says:

    IBM is betting the farm on Red Hat — and it better not mess up

    Who expects a $34 billion deal involving two enterprise powerhouses to drop on a Sunday afternoon, but IBM and Red Hat surprised us yesterday when they pulled the trigger on a historically large deal.

    IBM has been a poster child for a company moving through a painful transformation.

    They believe they can take their complex mix of infrastructure/software/platform services and emerging technologies like artificial intelligence, blockchain and analytics, and blend all of that with Red Hat’s profitable fusion of enterprise open source tools, cloud native, hybrid cloud and a keen understanding of the enterprise.

    As Jon Shieber pointed out yesterday, it was a tacit acknowledgement that company was not going to get the results it was hoping for with emerging technologies like Watson artificial intelligence. It needed something that translated more directly into sales.

    Red Hat can be that enterprise sales engine. It already is a company on a $3 billion revenue run rate, and it has a goal of hitting $5 billion.

    IBM that generates $19 billion a quarter, it represents a crucial addition.

    That’s because in spite of its iffy earnings reports over the last five years, Synergy Research reported that IBM had 7 percent of the cloud infrastructure market in its most recent report, which it defines as Infrastructure as a Service, Platform as a Service and hosted private cloud. It is the latter that IBM is particularly good at.

    The company has the pieces in place now and a decent amount of marketshare, but Red Hat gives it a much more solid hybrid cloud story to tell. They can potentially bridge that hosted private cloud business with their own public cloud (and presumably even those of their competitors) and use Red Hat as a cloud native and open source springboard, giving their sales teams a solid story to tell.

  9. Tomi Engdahl says:

    We (may) now know the real reason for that IBM takeover. A distraction for Red Hat to axe KDE
    Popular desktop Linux environment due for deprecation in RHEL – by 2024

    While everyone was distracted by IBM’s $34bn takeover bid, Red Hat quietly wrote a death-note for KDE – within Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) to be precise.

    On October 30, the Linux distro biz emitted Fedora 29 and RHEL 7.6, and in the latter’s changelog the following appears, which a Reg reader kindly just alerted us to:

    KDE Plasma Workspaces (KDE), which has been provided as an alternative to the default GNOME desktop environment has been deprecated. A future major release of Red Hat Enterprise Linux will no longer support using KDE instead of the default GNOME desktop environment.

    In other words, if you’re using RHEL on the desktop, at some point KDE will not be supported. As our tipster remarked: “Red Hat has never exactly been a massive supporter of KDE, but at least they shipped it and supported you using it.”


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