Across the different technology marketplaces we cover, we always see a flurry of M&A activity. Vendors have different rationales for their acquisitions -- the motives usually range from sensible to silly.
What exasperates me though is the near universal hype that accompanies M&A announcements. Both the analyst community and media tend to become uncritical cheerleaders when vendors go shopping. There's a kind of collective Stevie Wonder moment: "signed, sealed, delivered, it's yours!" (In contrast, workaday bloggers -- especially those at customers implementing the tools -- usually offer more balanced analysis.)
Based on my previous M&A advisory experience and also the history of M&As in general, I typically approach advising our subscribers in two ways:
Here’s what lies behind my healthy skepticism of vendor mergers and acquisitions.
Now, let me ask you this: if your technology vendor announces that they intend to add new features -- but not until a year down the road -- what’s your response going to be? You should be similarly skeptical about promises coming out of M&A announcements.
In short, it's signed, but not sealed nor delivered, not yours, yet...
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