Novell acquires collaborative software firm

14 Feb 2008

Linux networking specialist Novell has acquired SiteScape in a bid to extend its open collaboration and unified communications product lines.

US-headquartered SiteScape is the founder of the ICEcore open source collaboration project.

Founded in 1995, the company provides collaborative products for communication and management for distributed working teams.

“Advances in Web 2.0 technologies are driving new opportunities for unified communications (UC) and team collaboration,” said Mark Levitt, programme vice-president for collaborative computing and the enterprise workplace at IDC.

“Enterprise and SMB [small- to medium-sized business] customers are looking for solutions that combine real-time messaging, conferencing and IP voice calling along with online workspaces, social networking, blogs and wikis to improve team and enterprise productivity and innovation.

“Solutions which merge team collaboration and UC like those offered by the combined Novell-SiteScape, which are based around open source for rapid innovation and open standards for interoperability and platform flexibility, represent the next major step forward for business collaboration,” Levitt added.

“The acquisition of SiteScape fits squarely into the corporate strategy we have laid out,” said Ron Hovsepian, president and CEO of Novell. “It extends our leadership in promoting open source in the enterprise market and is a key technology addition in an area where we see great growth potential. Most importantly, it allows us to move aggressively to give customers a new, open option for collaboration, helping them escape vendor lock-in and offering easy integration across platforms, whether Linux or Windows.”

“Joining Novell helps us expand our technology much more broadly than we’ve been able to do to date,” said Andy Fox, chief technology officer at SiteScape. “Novell and SiteScape have already been strong partners, both in the ICEcore project and in taking products to market. With the merger, SiteScape customers gain a strong new partner supporting their deployments, enhancing the technology and helping them meet their rapidly evolving collaboration needs.”

Financial terms of the deal are not being disclosed.

By Niall Byrne