IBM to acquire Aspera

Michelle Clancy | 20-12-2013

IBM has agreed to acquire Aspera, the fast file transfer company. The move provides IBM with complementary capabilities to better enable companies to move big data, on premise or in the cloud, at global distances. The financial terms of the deal have not been disclosed.

While big data grows even bigger, traditional network protocols limit the speed and reliability of the data's movement to where it is needed most. For example, a clinical researcher might need access to complex genomic research stored across several cloud services around the world, or a movie director on a remote shoot might need to transmit the day's film shots back to the production studio. These big data transfers can take hours, days or weeks by traditional standards and can suffer from performance or security issues.

Aspera's patented extreme file transfer technology accelerates the secure transfer of large files and large collections of files by up to 99.9%, the company reducing a 26 hour transmission of a 24 gigabyte file, sent halfway around the world, down to just 30 seconds. This speed is powered by Aspera's patented fasp protocol.

This marks the latest big data investment for IBM, which has invested more than $16 billion in more than 30 analytics acquisitions over the last five years.

"Our experience working with thousands of clients on big data projects tells us that companies can better compete and win when they can quickly extract value from massive volumes of data," said John Mesberg, vice president of B2B and commerce Solutions, IBM. "With this acquisition, IBM addresses a key challenge for globally integrated enterprises by allowing them to move large data files much faster to the individuals who need them, wherever in the world they may be."

The acquisition of Aspera is subject to customary closing conditions and is expected to close in the first quarter 2014.