After a relatively long hiatus from the M&A scene CA seems to be back with bang. Following on the heels of its nearly half a billion buy of Rally Software, CA yesterday announced the acquisition of Grid-Tools. Grid-Tools is a test data management market leader. Prior to the acquisition they were a partner of not only CA, but HP and Oracle as well. Post acquisition it will remain to be seen whether HP and Oracle remain important partners.
Taken with the Rally acquisition a week ago this buy makes a strong statement that CA is doubling down on DevOps. Of course Rally literally wrote the book on Agile and with Grid-Tools leadership position in its space, CA has in one week brought in two leading companies in their space. As with any acquisition integration is always a question. In this case it is a double helix of integration. Integrating Rally with Grid-Tools and both into the larger CA portfolio will take some work.
Last week I spoke to James Harvey, General Manager and SVP, IT Business Management Division at CA Technologies. One of the topics we spoke about was that CA in buying Rally was not only buying some great IP and products, but also getting some top people. The Grid-Tools acquisition brings another influx of new blood to CA as well. On top of this CA also announced the appointment of Otto Berkes as CTO.
Taken all together we get a picture of CA on the move. They are adding new ideas, new people and new products as they seek to transform from a software provider in the mainframe space to a major player in the new application economy.
One of the things that I think we will also see CA move into in a bigger way is SaaS and services in general. Unlike many of its competitors, CA has remained a traditional software vendor for a long time. But with the state of technology today, offering software as a service and offering consulting services around the software is more and more a requirement rather than a luxury. This may cause some angst among CA service delivery partners, but I feel it is an inevitable step in CA’s market evolution.
Another telltale clue will be CA’s ability to retain the talent at these acquisitions. All to often brain drain occurs after acquisitions. I have not seen any announcements around management teams staying on post-closing, but CA could use the talent. They have seen some executives leave recently.
The real winner in all of this in my opinion is DevOps. Large technology providers continue to load up on DevOps offerings in anticipation of the larger global enterprise market adopting a new way of IT that includes things like Agile, DevOps, Cloud, SaaS, etc. It also bodes well for future acquisitions in this space by CA competitors which should help make some VCs sleep easier about their investments in startups in the space as well.
BTW, in the interests of full disclosure CA is a sponsor/advertiser here on DevOps.com, though we had no special notice or insight into any of this news.