IBM to acquire open-source software firm Red Hat for $34B

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In a similar but less pricey move in June, Microsoft Corp.

IBM said it will make the purchase with cash, credit and bridge lines, but did note that it would be disciplined to preserve its credit rating.

IBM has seen revenue decline by nearly a quarter since Rometty, 61, took the CEO role in 2012.

IBM had recently said it continues to build partnerships with multiple cloud providers, including AWS, Microsoft's Azure, Google Cloud, Alibaba and others to build hybrid solutions. At the same time, Red Hat will benefit from IBM's hybrid cloud and enterprise IT scale in helping expand their open source technology portfolio to businesses globally. "It changes everything about the cloud market", IBM CEO Ginni Rometty said in a statement.

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Amazon Web Services is the leader in cloud technology by market cap.

IBM has unveiled plans to acquire open source specialists Red Hat, in a blockbuster US$34 billion deal created to bolster the tech giant's hybrid cloud capabilities. "The next 80 per cent is about unlocking real business value and driving growth". "This is the next chapter of the cloud. It requires shifting business applications to hybrid cloud, extracting more data and optimising every part of the business, from supply chains to sales".

Wall Street bulls are stampeding to buy Red Hat shares after the open source software and services giant announced Sunday that IBM is buying the firm for $34 billion. The question is how IBM's might and largesse in the digital world will influence the open source OS.

Red Hat now has more than 95 offices worldwide, including major software-engineering groups in San Francisco and Boston and a public-policy operation in Tyson's Corner, Va., near the nation's capital.

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"IBM has a chance to strengthen on premise assets and offerings", said Holger Mueller, principal analyst at Constellation Research Inc.

Guggenheim Partners LLC and Morgan Stanley were financial advisers to Red Hat, while Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP offered legal advice to the company on the deal. But that is a shrinking business. It has faced years of revenue declines, as it transitions its legacy computer maker business into new technology products and services. Since the day we made a decision to bring open source to the enterprise, our mission has remained unchanged.

Red Hat will operate as a distinct unit within IBM's Hybrid Cloud team.

Big Blue announced the deal here, in the past hour, and Red Hat's take is here. Red Hat's stock is down 28 per cent over the past six months through Friday, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. "It remains to be seen if IBM can play the same role, which would be significant upside for IBM".

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IBM revealed that it will be spending $34 billion for this acquisition, which should close in the second half of 2019 if it passes regulations.

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