An overview of the week in deals in the Irish and global technology sector.
Irish agri-technology companies win contracts worth €12.9m at trade mission
While on an Enterprise Ireland trade mission to France, the Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation Richard Bruton, TD, has announced €12.9 worth of contracts for Irish agricultural technology companies.
Bruton embarked on a three-day trade mission to France on 30 June, along with representatives from 36 Irish companies and Enterprise Ireland CEO Frank Ryan, and yesterday he announced a number of significant sales contracts from Enterprise Ireland client companies and French partners.
Dromone, based in Oldcastle, Co Meath, secured a €9.7m contract with France’s largest exporter of agricultural products, AGCO Group.
Agricultural manufacturing company Samco signed a €220,000 contract with Cavac. The French co-op will now be the sole distributor of the Limerick-based company’s machines and degradable plastic film in the Vendée region (west France).
Finally, Dairymaster from Tralee, Co Kerry, signed an exclusive contract with Genes Diffusion expected to achieve €3m in sales in a collaboration that will allow Dairymaster to deliver world-class dairy equipment with Genes Diffusion’s fertility management system.
Dell acquires Quest Software for an estimated US$2.4bn
IT giant Dell has signed an agreement to acquire Quest Software for US$2.4bn. The acquisition – which expands Dell’s software capabilities in systems management, security, data protection and workspace management – represents the foundation of a new US$1.2bn-a-year software business for the Texan firm.
Dell recently formed its new software group to build upon its existing software expertise, particularly in areas like enterprise solutions, and help differentiate Dell from its competitors.
The acquisition of Quest, particularly in areas like identity and access management, performance monitoring, Windows Server management and database management, will complement Dell’s scalable design approach as well as its recent acquisitions of companies like SonicWall, Secureworks, Clerity Solutions and Make Technologies.
“The addition of Quest will enable Dell to deliver more competitive server, storage, networking and end-user computing solutions and services to customers,” said John Swainson, president, Dell Software Group.
Sony Computer Entertainment to acquire Gaikai Inc
Sony Computer Entertainment (SCE) has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire cloud-based gaming company Gaikai Inc for about US$380m.
Gaikai Inc, which is headquartered in Aliso Viejo, California, has developed a cloud-streaming platform that enables the streaming of games to various devices via the internet.
Under the deal, SCE will establish a new cloud service and expand its network business by leveraging Gaikai’s technology and infrastructure, including data centres servicing dozens of countries and key partners worldwide.
"By combining Gaikai’s resources, including its technological strength and engineering talent with SCE’s extensive game platform knowledge and experience, SCE will provide users with unparallelled cloud entertainment experiences," said Andrew House, president and Group CEO of Sony Computer Entertainment Inc.
Microsoft forced to write down US$6.2bn acquisition of ad firm AQuantive
Microsoft is to take a US$6.2bn writedown – almost exactly what it paid – for its acquisition of online advertising firm AQuantive. The software giant acquired AQuantive in 2007 for US$6.3bn to compete more effectively against Google.
But unlike Google, advertising isn’t at the heart of what Microsoft does, and the investment has effectively been allowed to sputter out. It also reveals that from an online perspective, things aren’t rosy at Microsoft by any stretch of the imagination.
Microsoft is likely to post a record loss for the quarter ending in June because of the writedown.
Accounting rules dictate that the software company has had to take the writedown because its online business isn’t growing fast enough and the acquisition of AQuantive hasn’t delivered the revenues that had been hoped for.
Microsoft’s loss-making online division is now relying on gains by its Bing search engine to deliver growth.
Agricultural technology image via Shutterstock
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