Informatica: Wheeling and dealing in the Windy City

Contact: Brenon Daly

It appears that the Second City is a first stop for M&A at Informatica. The data integration company picked up Chicago-based startup Applimation for $40m on Thursday. And there’s continuing speculation that Redwood City, California-based Informatica will reach for the Windy City’s Initiate Systems for a master data management platform. So, in addition to being (in the words of Carl Sandburg) the ‘Hog Butcher for the World/ Tool Maker, Stacker of Wheat/[and]… City of the Big Shoulders,’ Chicago is emerging as a bit of a data dealer.

Of course, there’s another Chicago connection to a possible Informatica deal, one that has the company on the sell side. We have speculated in the past that Oracle might make a play for Informatica to shore up its data quality and data integration business. How does the city figure into that rumored pairing?

As has often been recounted, Oracle CEO Larry Ellison was raised by his adoptive parents on the hardscrabble South Side and very briefly attended the University of Chicago. Shortly after dropping out and founding the company that would eventually go on to become Oracle, one of Ellison’s first hires at the fledgling firm was a young programmer, who had studied at the University of Illinois, for the Chicago office. The person hired was Sohaib Abbasi, who spent 20 years at the database giant before leaving to head up Informatica.