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IBM to acquire i2 to accelerate big data analytics

Deal to boost Big Blue’s security threat and fraud detection offerings

IBM to acquire i2 to accelerate big data analytics
IBM's acquisition of i2 will boost its security threat and fraud detection offerings.

IBM is acquiring i2, a UK-based developer of analysis software for fraud detection and security threat analysis, under an agreement.

IBM will combine the i2 software with its data collection and data warehousing technologies to help government agencies and businesses such as banks and insurance companies analyse huge volumes of data for security tasks.

The two companies expect to close the acquisition by the end of the year, subject to closing conditions and regulatory reviews. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Once the acquisition is complete i2 will become part of the IBM Software Group, the company has said.

Business analytics is a major focus for IBM and revenue from business analytics software and services grew 20% in the first half of 2011. In the last five years IBM has made 25 business analytics-related acquisitions, including i2, totaling more than $14 billion.

"IBM's goal is to better equip public safety officials and businesses with the information and tools they need to ensure safer cities," said Craig Hayman, general manager of Industry Solutions at IBM. "The combined capabilities of IBM and i2 will help customers uncover patterns and trends that will allow them to more effectively protect the privacy and safety of citizens, businesses and governments."

The i2 software combines analytical and visualisation capabilities with real-time information sharing tools that help analysts identify connections, patterns and relationships within huge volumes of data. A bank, for example, can use the software to recognise fraudulent financial transactions while a government intelligence agency can spot a potential security threat while analysing phone call records.

The i2 software is used within the banking, retail, insurance and health-care industries, law enforcement organisations and national security and law enforcement agencies, IBM said. The software is used by 12 of the world's 20 largest retail banks, for example. Altogether the vendor has 4,500 customers in 150 countries.

"The combination of i2's products and IBM's advanced data collection and warehousing technologies will be compelling for clients seeking to enhance situational awareness and make connections between seemingly unrelated information from oceans of data," said Robert Griffin, i2's CEO, in a statement.

Based in Cambridge, UK, i2 has offices in the US, Canada and Australia.

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