Oracle acquires CSM provider Front Porch Digital
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September 16, 2014
The apparent endless gobbling up of smaller IT companies and startups by larger corporations
has seen Oracle acquire content storage management provider Front Porch Digital (FPD).
FPD's software products reside in a server between a media network on one hand and a storage
resource storing files, such as videos in online and archive media, at the other end of things.
The FPD server integrates a media customer’s proprietary content commands and formats them with
those in the storage library and does whatever the media customer requires, such as retrieve and
distribute them, and receive and store them.
Another method of describing FPD's mission is to say it IDs a world-wide broadcast archive
management supplier against a media background of migration to digital workflows.
We can observe that its customers’ rich media assets are a niche on the overall Big Data market.
Privately-owned FPD has some 550 customers, ones like the BBC's Studios and Post Production division’s
Digital Media Services business – the commercial subsidiary of the BBC that preserves, remasters and
manages content for clients such as the Imperial War Museums – is installing Front Porch Digital’s DIVArchive
CSM and DIVAdirector media asset management (MAM) systems.
FPD claims that it is “the global leader in solutions for migrating, managing, and monetizing media
content,” and operates both on a customer’s premises or in the cloud.
Other customers include NASCAR and the U.S. Library of Congress. This is the business Oracle
is buying, and it's basically the only business it's interested in.
We'll provide you with a bit of history on Front Porch Digital. The company was founded
in 2000 with its headquarters in Colorado. Mike Knaisch became CEO in 2002. Its initial funding
came from Equity Pier, Incentra Solutions and Sumitomo Capital.
The company was then acquired by Managed Storage International in a reverse merger in August 2004
by Toronto private equity group Genuity Capital Partners for $38 million.
Front Porch Digital then acquired Samma Systems in 2008 and its videotape migration and preservation
Oracle says it and Front Porch Digital “will help organizations more effectively and efficiently manage the
growing complexities associated with the migration, integration, storage and delivery of rich
media content,” and the Oracle/FPD combo will “create the most comprehensive enterprise-grade
cloud and on-premise content storage management solution.”
Oracle vice president for systems John Fowler said-- “Front Porch Digital’s success and unique
capabilities complement Oracle’s existing high performance and scalable engineered storage solutions.”
Knaisch said FPD was “thrilled to be joining Oracle to continue our long-standing partnership.
This combination will enable us to better serve and support our customers at a global scale.”
The price was not revealed by either party. We expect it to be in the $100 million range at least. By
and large, FPD employees are expected to join Oracle, without too many losses of jobs due to duplication.
Oracle is reviewing FPD’s product roadmap and FPD customers will get to hear the results of the
review in due course.
It stated-- “Oracle is committed to maintaining Front Porch Digital’s open integration
platform with third-party systems and applications, and it plans to further augment Front Porch Digital
solutions with Oracle technologies to deliver enhanced features and functionalities.”
So we can expect Oracle technology to feature strongly. The deal gives Oracle a well-defined
market niche in which to sell FPD-integrated and optimized storage gear, and a useful cloud service
business and opportunity.
Source: Front Porch Digital.
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