Print 14 comment(s) - last by ksuWildcat.. on Mar 19 at 8:27 AM

IBM and Sun Microsystems are reportedly in negotiations for a buyout

IBM is now in negotiations to purchase Sun Microsystems, as the struggling company tries to survive in a very turbulent global economy.  The Wall Street Journal has published details about the proposed deal.

IBM is reportedly willing to spend up to $6.5 billion in cash and stock for Sun, the WSJ said without naming sources.  If true, that's about double the closing price of Sun's stock last week -- a discount considering how Sun has struggled on the stock market for the past 12 months.

Both Sun and IBM sell computer systems that don't rely on the Microsoft Windows operating system or Intel's CPUs, and a possible buyout will strengthen IBM's product lines.  IBM currently rules the server market, and the buyout would help IBM strengthen its lead in the extremely competitive $53.1 billion market.

Recent talks of a possible buyout have led to Sun's stock on the European market to surge 61 percent, increasing from $2.28 per share up to $6.

Sun previously spoke with Hewlett-Packard regarding a possible merger, but talks promptly fell through.  If IBM is able to close the deal, the company will have a strong strategic advantage against its main competitor.

Sun Microsystems has struggled over the years while trying to get users to adopt its Solaris operating system.  Furthermore, Sun also found it very difficult to try and monetize software that it gives away for free, even when the company attempted to focus more on support.

IBM has proven it can properly monetize free software, and would be able to build on Sun's strong reliance on developing open source technologies.

The deal could be done as early as this week, or it could fall apart completely, negotiation insiders have warned.

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By elessar1 on 3/18/2009 10:38:58 AM , Rating: 3
Now, only Fujitsu will use SPARC...

By MrPoletski on 3/18/2009 10:49:01 AM , Rating: 3
I guess Intel will have to make do with the moon.

*bends over and yanks down trousers*

By Chocobollz on 3/18/2009 1:04:52 PM , Rating: 1
Not if they change its name to STARC, made by STARC Industries (and yes, their CEO name is Tony Starc :D)

By cheetah2k on 3/18/2009 10:08:58 PM , Rating: 2
I think this is a good acquisition. It ensures Sun has the financial backing to make good on warranty & support for legacy products, while maintaining their position in the server market.

On the other side tho..... Now that AMD doesn't officially own any FABs, IBM could probably snap them up too??

By Hyperion1400 on 3/19/2009 12:23:10 AM , Rating: 2
Why would Sun stop making SPARC. Hell, if IBM were smart, they would allow Sun to keep its engineering dept. while giving them even more resources. At the same time, IBM should start phasing out Power PC and begin integrating SPARC into their operations. Let's face it... SPARC is about 10x better than anything IBM has on the market.

ZFS in Linux, Will be interesting.
By greylica on 3/18/2009 8:52:01 PM , Rating: 4
It will be interesting to see an implementation of ZFS in Linux, without the strange license Open Solaris is using.
It's not Unix (closed) It's not Linux (open)...
The solaris containers is also an interesting techonology to incorporate in Linux...

By TomZ on 3/18/09, Rating: -1
RE: Java
By ksuWildcat on 3/18/2009 12:02:22 PM , Rating: 2
Sun basically gave away Java which was probably worth many billions of dollars if they had a reasonable stragegy for making money off of it. Fools.

It still is worth billions, due to the associated patents and IP. Offering a robust, platform-independent language and development tools for free is precisely why Java still dominates .NET and other languages/frameworks in the enterprise world. Sun has some of the best and brightest engineers, I just question the marketing of their business model.

RE: Java
By FITCamaro on 3/19/2009 7:53:49 AM , Rating: 2
Fear for those bright minds if IBM takes over.

MySQL competes with IBMs offerings so it wouldn't surprise me if they killed development on it.

This is one merger I don't want to see happen.

RE: Java
By ksuWildcat on 3/19/2009 8:27:36 AM , Rating: 2
This is one merger I don't want to see happen.

I totally agree. I am not a fan of IBM software, and I'd hate to see anything happen to MySQL, Netbeans, Glassfish, etc. Sun has done a tremendous job with open source software projects, and I don't think that IBM will continue to foster that kind of corporate culture.

RE: Java
By Donovan on 3/18/2009 12:05:32 PM , Rating: 5
And AT&T gave away C++, but you can't assume either language would have had even 1% of their current success if they remained proprietary.

On the rare occasions when large companies do what is best for the industry rather than deliberately create fragmentation, we should applaud them not deride them.

RE: Java
By Chocobollz on 3/18/2009 12:56:03 PM , Rating: 2
The problem is, most companies will simply say that their product is better than competitors, and their aim is what the best for the industry..

RE: Java
By elegault on 3/18/2009 4:06:42 PM , Rating: 2
Companies holding proprietary tech usually don't have any significant integration.

Look at Sony for example: memory stick, UMD, etc.

It isn't until they are the ONLY commercial option that proprietary systems work.

Let's say for the most part the Sony got lucky with VHS and BD. But, that's when they're marketing juggernaut gets involved.

RE: Java
By Bubbacub on 3/18/2009 4:13:08 PM , Rating: 3
sony had betamax - they only switched to making vhs after their own format died

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