BPMS Market consolidation continues: Progress buys Savvion

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After the announcement, just before Christmas, of IBM’s purchase of Lombardi, hardly has the New Year started then we get the announcement at the beginning of this week that Progress Software are to purchase Savvion.

One of the comments I had made in last year’s Market Update on BPMS was that this market hadn’t really consolidated. So there I am in the process of writing the update to this report and we get two of the original leaders of BPMS, Lombardi and Savvion, be swallowed up by large companies. Watch this space for more details about the new BPMS market update.

In January 2009, I wrote 2 articles about Savvion (Savvion: exploiting business frameworks); these explained what the company was doing particularly in terms of developing business frameworks to speed implementation of business processes. The company was founded in 1994, with the first product release being in 1999. Savvion is perhaps less well known in Europe than in the USA, but it claims to have 24 of the Fortune 100 in its customer base of over 300 currently.

As for why now was the right time for Savvion to sell, Dr. M.A. Ketabchi, founder, president and CEO of Savvion was reported to have said: “We have a large customer base of leading enterprises, and for them BPM is increasingly becoming more critical, with more complex solutions. For Savvion to offer them multi-national support I thought we needed several years to get there, and by then it would be too late.”

Dr Ketabchi said that when seeking a buyer, he wanted to find a company where Savvion would fit well pretty much straight away.

From Progress Software’s viewpoint what does this acquisition mean? Richard D. Reidy, president and chief executive officer, Progress Software said in their press release: “We believe that achieving operational responsiveness has become a business imperative, enabling businesses to achieve the highest level of operational performance. Our acquisition of Savvion enhances our goal to provide unprecedented business visibility, responsiveness and business process improvement, coupled with the highest degree of data integrity and integration.”

So how will Savvion integrate with Progress Software’s product set? The press release talks about a product mix of Progress Software’s Business Event Processing (BEP), Business Transaction Assurance (BTA) and Integration portfolio, coupled with the Savvion BPM suite. This product is being aimed at enabling enterprises to achieve the highest levels of operational responsiveness. This mix would provide the ability to improve the execution of business processes by detecting system bottle-necks through visibility into process transactions from end to end. Additionally the product mix will enable a better ability to capture, analyze and respond to opportunities and threats to the business through business event processing in real-time.

What slightly concerns me is that Savvion had identified the need to work with partners to develop business frameworks and I don’t see anything in the acquisition announcement that tells me whether or not this lead strategy will continue under the new ownership.