Recent Mobile Acquisitions Remind Enterprises to Look for Vendors That Have Invested in MEAP

Charlotte Dunlap
Charlotte Dunlap

Summary Bullets:

  • Mobile platforms signal success for enterprise application platforms vendors
  • Case in point: This week, Antenna Software was snatched up by Pegasystems

Two recent MEAP acquisitions were prompted by the need to fill out current portfolios in a sure-fire area of technology, and nothing spells success faster than the acquisition of mobile technology. Because time to market is everything, those involved in application platforms are realizing they cannot get up to speed in mobile platforms overnight and are wise to acquire companies which are most familiar with the standards, toolsets, and practices around this new breed of application infrastructure. 

This week long-standing mobile app platform pure play Antenna Software was acquired by BPM vendor Pegasystems, a move which will severely limit Antenna’s applicability within the broader market. Also new PaaS golden child Pivotal, a spin-off of VMware, acquired Xtreme Labs, which will bring mobile development technology, although Pivotal remains quiet on its plans for the acquisition.

Antenna attracted its buyer through an impressive breadth of mobile technology it’s evolved in recent years. This summer, the company released a services engine which redefined its flagship AMPchroma platform as a mobile PaaS, addressing both developer and operations issues through pre-packaged services for speeding app development and deployment (please see Antenna Takes on the Broader Mobile Market with New Hosted Services, June 26, 2013).  Earlier, the company strategically opened up the front end piece of its app platform and added Java support to better embrace third-party tools and standard languages as the industry moves towards a more heterogeneous array of development tools.

It was suggested by this blogger two months ago that Pivotal would be wise to acquire a mobile app platform vendor to complement its platform services and provide a competitive edge over PaaS rivals (please see Why Pivotal Cloud Foundry Needs a Mobile App Platform, August 29, 2013). Advanced app development, especially for mobile apps, is shaking out to be the leading drivers for platform services which support self-service, automated provisioning including elasticity for ease and agility in app development and deployment.

An important point which helps justify both these acquisitions is that backend integration has become one of the major pain points for mobile app developers, who will increasingly look for this task to be fulfilled as an as-a-service offering, a notion which both these acquired companies can address.

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