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Adobe to buy Omniture for $1.8 billion

Calling the move a "game changer," Adobe's CEO says acquisition of the Web analytics company will help customers looking to better monetize their content.

Adobe said on Tuesday that it has reached a deal to acquire Web analytics firm Omniture for $1.8 billion, or $21.50 per share.

That represents a 45 percent premium to Omniture's average closing price for the last 30 days, Adobe noted in its press release. Omniture, which was started in 1996, has about 1,200 employees and took in just under $300 million in the 12 months ending Dec. 31.

Adobe CEO Shantanu Narayen called the move a "game changer" for the company.

"Adobe customers are looking to us for solutions to deliver engaging experiences and more effectively monetize their content and applications online," Narayen said in the press release announcing the deal.

The two companies said the deal is expected to close during Adobe's fourth quarter and is subject to government approvals. Omniture will become a new unit within Adobe, with Omniture CEO Josh James continuing to lead the business as an Adobe senior vice president. Adobe said the deal should add to earnings in fiscal 2010.

Update 1:45 p.m. PT: In an interview, Adobe senior vice president Paul Weiskopf said the deal will allow Adobe to merge the "art" of developing and delivering content with the "science" of measuring the impact of that content.

"Today that's a real pain point for customers," Weiskopf said. "We have the opportunity to integrate what is today a pretty disparate and not tightly integrated set of workflows."

The deal is the company's largest since its $3-billion-plus acquisition of Macromedia, announced in April 2005.

Weiskopf declined to discuss how long the deal had been in the works or whether there will be any job cuts once the deal goes through, although the company has a conference call slated to start at 2 p.m. PT and will also file additional details with the Securities and Exchange Commission as part of its tender offer to acquire Omniture's shares.

Update 2:15 p.m. PT: Adobe's executives are now on a conference call talking about the deal, as well as the company's most recent quarterly results.

However, there has been nothing too earth-shattering thus far.