IBM has announced its intention to acquire i2, a UK-based company whose analytics software is used to detect crime and fraud and to analyse military intelligence.
The Cambridge-based company’s clients include 80% of the world’s national security organisations, 25 out of 28 NATO members’ military forces, 12 of the world’s 20 largest retail banks and eight of the top 10 largest companies in the world.
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IBM says the combination of i2’s technology with its own analytics equipment will "help customers uncover patterns and trends that will allow them to more effectively protect the privacy and safety of citizens, businesses and governments".
It said the acquisition would "accelerate big data analytics to transform global cities". A spokesperson from IBM explained that this refers to city law enforcement organisations using the technology to combat crime.
Acknowledging that its technology might raise concerns about privacy and civil liberties, i2 states on its website that it "understands the legal, regulatory, and moral imperatives its users live by".
"From immutable audit logs, to reversible data consolidation capabilities, to authorised use standards that permit data discovery without gaining access to data content, i2 products are designed to help users adhere to – and go beyond – the strictest civil liberties requirements," the company claims.
The deal is the second acquisition of a UK software company by a US provider in as many days. Yesterday, application infrastructure provider Tibco announced its intention to buy Hampshire-headquarter BPM provider Nimbus Partners. This of course follows the acquisition of Cambridge success story Autonomy by HP.