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Open Text Acquires Vignette

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I’ve seen quite a few analyst criticisms of Open Text’s recent announcement that it plans to acquire Vignette for $310 million. Apparently, Vignette got killed last quarter, seeing its license sales drop 29% and its overall revenue drop 24%. Vignette was clearly in trouble, and as Open Text likes to do, it came in and bought the company when it was down.

People have questioned what Open Text really got, as Open Text has most of the technology is picked up already. I think these people are missing the point. First off, Vignette apparently has big-time WCM technology with several big-name Fortune 2000 users. Vignette is a market leader in this area, and it’s always good to pick up a leader in a market that is not going away. Heck, Open Text, has even been known to pick up leaders in declining markets… Open Text also picked up some solid records management technology with Tower Technology stuff that Vignette picked up a few years back. Once again, I think this is an upgrade for Open Text in an area they have clearly targeted for future growth.

Finally, because of the market it’s in, it is imparative for Open Text to continue to grow. Competing with the likes of IBM and EMC, size does matter. Open Text seems to understand this, and this latest acquisitoin should now have it approaching $1 billion in annual revenue. As long as it stands alone – and it is one of the last major ECM vendors standing – Open Text has to keep pushing forward so its Global 2000 customer base will not hesitate about doing business with it.

Per its history, we’re confident Open Text will figure out how to cut costs at Vignette and fold it into its profitable growing business. Open Text has certainly come a long way in the 10 years we’ve been covering them- outlasting a ton of competitors, and a key part of its strategy has been acquisitions just like the Vignette buy. We expect to see more as well.

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