IBM Eats Up Emptoris, 20th Acquisition in MA Since 2003

News flash: Another Massachusetts software company is joining Big Blue. Armonk, NY-based IBM (NYSE: IBM) said today it is acquiring Emptoris, a Burlington, MA-based maker of supply and contract management software. Terms of the deal weren’t given, but it is expected to close in the first quarter of next year. This will be the 20th acquisition IBM has made of a company based in (or with major operations in) Massachusetts since 2003, out of a total of 70-plus acquisitions since then.

Emptoris has 725 employees worldwide, and IBM says the company will be integrated into its software group. A Big Blue spokesman declined to comment on whether Emptoris will move into IBM’s Mass Lab in Littleton, MA, since the acquisition hasn’t closed yet. Prior to this deal, Emptoris was majority-owned by Marlin Equity Partners. The software firm is led by CEO Patrick Quirk.

The deal is being spun as part of IBM’s “smarter commerce” initiative, which seeks to help businesses adapt to shifting customer buying patterns. Emptoris’s software includes cloud-based analytics tools that are specialized for procurement and supply chain operations.

IBM’s recent Massachusetts acquisitions include Netezza in business analytics and data warehousing, Q1 Labs in software security, and Unica in marketing and e-commerce software.

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