BY LISA COLEMAN
The software management market witnessed another acquisition recently as Precise Software Solutions scooped up Windows-focused storage resource management (SRM) vendor W. Quinn Associates for $35 million. This year, the software management market is expected to top $5 billion, and over the next five years the market is expected to grow by 26 percent CAGR, according to Gartner Dataquest.
Precise, a Westwood, MA-based software company specializing in products for application performance management, acquired W. Quinn to further expand into the storage market. W. Quinn also has an established relationship with Microsoft, which uses the W. Quinn SRM in its server appliance kit.
Earlier this year, Sun Microsystems acquired Windows-based SRM vendor HighGround Systems. However, that price tag was $400 million.
"We were already expanding into the storage space," says Andrew Bird, executive vice president of marketing at Precise. "This acquisition gives us the ability to accelerate a number of our technologies in that area." Bird also emphasized that W.Quinn's relationship with Microsoft will allow Precise to more rapidly develop products in Windows NT/2000 environments.
Last year, Precise went public and set aggressive growth goals that include acquisitions. Precise expects this merger will leverage the reseller and OEM channels of both organizations, as well as expand its partnership base. The company currently has alliances with EMC, Cisco, Hewlett-Packard, Exodus, and others. Both EMC and HP license Precise technology for their storage products.
Most recently, Precise developed software for the HP Surestore XP disk array family. The Precise/Crosspoint product links to HP's XP disk array via the HP Performance Advisor XP software to map physical XP device confirmation with logical performance metrics gathered by Precise/SQL from the application, database, and operating system.
Precise also delivers a suite of performance management software modules that poll database metrics directly. It correlates database and operating system activity with enterprise resource planning (ERP) application performance to locate bottlenecks in any database or operating system.
W. Quinn will operate as a division of Precise for the immediate future, according to Bird. And joint research and development efforts will aim to blend the two companies' products together as soon as possible.
SRM focuses on reducing the complexity of storage management. Typically, SRM is responsible for managing storage assets, which comprise data that is both tangible (physical assets such as disk storage systems, tape libraries and storage area network communications gear) and intangible (logical volumes, files, and data constructed by specific applications, such as application databases, tables and mailboxes.)
SRM tasks include several parts: space-usage management, capacity planning, asset management, business continuity planning, and management of events, performance, and configuration.