Iona Acquires LogicBlaze for Open-Source SOA

April 11, 2007

The deal lets Iona speed up its strategy of delivering enterprise SOA software.

Iona Technologies has announced its acquisition of LogicBlaze, a provider of open-source service-oriented architecture technology.

Financial terms of the all-cash acquisition were not disclosed. Iona, based in Dublin, Ireland, with U.S. headquarters in Waltham, Mass., provides SOA infrastructure solutions and is a leader of the open-source Eclipse SOA Tools Project.

The deal enables Iona to accelerate its strategy of delivering enterprise open-source SOA infrastructure software to large IT organizations, company officials said.

As part of the acquisition, LogicBlaze co-founders Hiram Chirino, Rob Davies and James Strachan will join Iona's open-source business, Iona officials said. LogicBlaze is based in Marina del Rey, Calif.

"Iona's customers are looking for ways to reduce costs, while at the same time seeking to add the innovation and flexibility required of IT to rapidly respond to changing business requirements," said Iona CEO Peter Zotto in a statement.

"In a 'flat world,' open-source communities are providing a new level of creativity to support the trend toward SOA," Zotto said. "Iona is committed to combining the innovation of open source with innovation from Iona and its partners to deliver solutions based on Iona's unique, distributed approach to SOA."

Ronald Schmelzer, an analyst with ZapThink, said, "From a technology perspective, LogicBlaze has some good open-source-based stuff that will add to Iona's open-source offerings. But, as a company, LogicBlaze never really got that far."

Indeed, Schmelzer said he believes "Iona saw an opportunity to take on a failing company's valuable assets as a way of continuing its own momentum. Certainly, LogicBlaze won't add a ton of new customers, and I don't think Iona would admit that - Iona - didn't have a credible open-source offering beforehand, so we have to see this as a momentum and opportunistic acquisition."

Meanwhile, LogicBlaze's Strachan said in a statement: "As a greater number of large IT organizations embrace the use of open-source technology to support their mission-critical applications, they want to know that the innovation of open source is paired with world-class service and support from the development stage through deployment. This is a philosophy shared by Iona and LogicBlaze."

Schmelzer said the deal not only increases Iona's momentum in the open-source arena - typified by its Celtix open-source Enterprise Service Bus offering - but also allows the company to compete for mind share in a market that is rapidly consolidating. However, the open-source-versus-commercial part of Iona's strategy is still a bit challenging, Schmelzer added.

"Their next step needs to be a compelling road map for customers and prospects on how they should choose between open-source and commercial offerings; what the Iona value proposition is there, and the revenue stream; and how they plan to cross-sell or up-sell from one to the other," Schmelzer said.

Copyright 2007 by Ziff Davis Media, Distributed by United Press International

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