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Sybase acquires rival XcelleNet, expects lower 1Q revenues

Acquisition mania seems to have hit the wireless data industry, as wireless enterprise player Sybase Inc. announced a massive $95.2 million acquisition of rival XcelleNet Inc. Separately, Sybase said its first-quarter revenues will come in below expectations due to several transactions that did not close as expected.

The news sent Sybase’s stock down by about 10 percent to about $18.86 per share.

Under the terms of the acquisition, database company Sybase said it would integrate XcelleNet into its iAnywhere Solutions subsidiary, which focuses on the wireless market. XcelleNet sells technology to extend corporate information to wireless devices, as well as machine-to-machine and security offerings. iAnywhere sells wireless access to database and corporate information, and last year also acquired wireless content company AvantGo Inc. Through the XcelleNet acquisition, iAnywhere scores 2,200 new customers, as well as expanded relationships with partners including Hewlett-Packard Co. and Microsoft Corp.

“This acquisition is expected to bring important enhancements to the Unwired Enterprise offering,” said John Chen, Sybase’s chairman, chief executive officer and president. “We can now offer our enterprise clients a full portfolio of solutions for the management of their remote and mobile systems-from security, to network connections and even the devices themselves. Sybase will be No. 1 in the critical software categories required to unwire the enterprise.”

The move is just the latest in a long line of merger-and-acquisition news. Square Enix recently purchased UIEvolution, M-Qube bought Sharp Robot, and TeleCommunication Systems Inc. bought Aether Systems Inc.’s wireless enterprise division.

Separately, Sybase said its first-quarter revenues will likely be in the range of $183 million to $185 million, lower than expected. However, the company reaffirmed its full-year guidance of pro-forma earnings per share of between $1.08 to $1.10.


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