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CA buys Nimsoft to tap into the enterprise-light systems market

CA has bought the streamlined systems management software vendor Nimsoft for $350 million.

Today, CA signed a definitive agreement to acquire Nimsoft Inc. in an all-cash transaction valued at $350 million.

The Redwood City, Calif.-based Nimsoft was the systems management darling of the managed service provider (MSP) market and had won over some enterprise data center admins as well. IT managers turned to Nimsoft for what it didn't offer: long implementation times, giant consulting engagements and features that admins won't use.

Islandia, N.Y.-based CA saw the writing on the wall -- many IT organizations were frustrated by byzantine licensing structures and 18-month software upgrade cycles associated with the Big Four systems management software vendors.

Ina blog post on the CA-Nimsoft acquisition, Jay Fry, CA's vice president of business unit strategy, outlined why Nimsoft has been successful insystems management. 

Nimsoft knows firsthand, the emerging enterprises and these MSPs and cloud service providers require you to do things differently. The software needs to be straightforward (and even easy) to install, use, and maintain. It needs to have a very broad but focused set of functional capabilities, stretching across a significant amount of the environments, components, and devices that an organization will want to manage, inside and outside its four walls. Nimsoft fits that bill nicely. In fact, Nimsoft has been doing that so well, that many have called it (rightly or wrongly) an alternative to solutions from the Big Four management vendors.

Should existing Nimsoft users fear the heavy hand of CA? Dennis Callaghan, a senior analyst at the New York-based 451 Group said if CA follows the Wiley acquisition model, probably not.

"CA set Wiley up to run its own independent business unit within CA," Callaghan said. "Nimsoft will still have autonomy. CA has $4 billion in revenue and $2 billion in cash reserves; they have a lot of resources they can put into technologies, and it will be a good deal for the Nimsoft customer."

Industry watchers said tools that manage virtual and cloud environments are ripe for investment and to keep an eye on virtualization management provider Akorri as a potential Big Four investment target in the near future.

What did you think of this feature? Write to's Matt Stansberry about your data center concerns at

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