Dell ponies up $2.4B to buy Quest Software

Dell wins a bidding war for Quest and now builds out its software unit with an eye on everything from identity management to data center tools to database administration.

In a push to become a software player, Dell won a bidding war for Quest Software as it aims to bolster its data center software. The final price tag: $28 a share, or $2.4 billion.

Dell had been rumored as a buyer for Quest software for months. Quest received a $23 a share bid from Insight Venture Management and Vector Capital in March and then a "strategic buyer" pushed the price up to $27.50. Dell ultimately sealed the deal for $28 a share.

Quest's software manages databases and backs up data. Dell has been focused on building out its software business to offset its reliance on commodity PCs. Quest's portfolio revolves around development and management tools on Windows and VMware.

In other words, Dell builds out its relatively new software unit with a host of software for use in the data center.

According to Dell, Quest will add to the company's enterprise services. Among the key items:

  • Quest brings identity management software that can complement Dell's SonicWall and Secureworks units.
  • Quest's performance monitoring tools will work with Dell's data center automation push.
  • Windows server software from Quest will complement Dell's Clerity and Make Technologies purchases.

For fiscal 2011, Quest had $857 million in revenue. Quest also has 1,500 sales people and 1,300 developers.

This story originally appeared at ZDNet's Between the Lines under the headline "Dell acquires Quest: $2.4 billion to be a software player."

About the author

    Larry Dignan is editor in chief of ZDNet and editorial director of CNET's TechRepublic. He has covered the technology and financial-services industries since 1995.

     

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