on Monday IBM announced it would buy DataMirror, a Canadian software company. Data Mirror made its living by selling software that detects change in data sources and then managing replication. It differed from other ETL technology in being designed from the ground up to work in real-time rather than batch, which made it well suited to some customer situations, and the software was modestly priced. The technology was also used by some customers for backup and business continuity reasons. It had a large customer base (well over 2,000).
For IBM the acquisition adds some solid technology to its data warehouse offering and its “on demand” strategy, in this case replacing Powerpoint promises with something that actually works. Datamirror was publicly traded on the Toronto stock exchange. It did $46.5 million in revenue last year and was hoping for $55 million in fiscal year 2008, so this was a company that was delivering solid though unspectacular growth, though its share price had doubled in the last twelve months. IBM’s price of $162 million is over three times trailing revenues and so is a healthy valuation for the company, and a small premium to its stock market valuation of last week.