Intalio gets its rollup rolling

Contact: Dennis Callaghan

Intalio’s open source rollup has finally started to roll. The company recently took the wraps off a deal it actually did earlier this month, picking up open source CRM software vendor CodeGlide. The acquirer, which has raised some $45m in venture funding, said earlier this year that it planned to do as many as 10 acquisitions over the next two years. (Intalio indicated that it was eyeing small firms with only a dozen or so employees. For its part, CodeGlide had only four employees, all of whom have gone over to Intalio.)

Intalio has wasted little time in making CodeGlide’s software available as Intalio CRM and it plans to eventually make components of this software available under the AGPL open source license. While we can think of more exciting markets than CRM that Intalio could have bought its way into, the deal nonetheless makes a lot of sense, particularly when viewed in light of its Intalio Cloud offering.

In the same breath that it announced the CodeGlide acquisition, Intalio unveiled Intalio Cloud, which is an IBM or Hewlett-Packard server appliance preloaded with Intalio’s applications – both business process management (BPM) and CRM – along with elastic compute and storage utilities. The box is designed to be the basis for companies’ internal private clouds and is available as a managed service offering. It also powers Intalio’s own on-demand wares. So why does this all make sense?

Combine CRM, BPM and cloud infrastructure and you have the main ingredients for becoming a true platform-as-a-service (PaaS) vendor. Intalio will be able to make both its BPM software and new CRM software available on demand and now has the technology to allow customers to build and/or customize their own business applications; it can offer this technology in the cloud or via private clouds. Successful PaaS initiatives – think LongJump and – require not only good development tools but also an actual application platform that underlies these tools, which are then used for building customizations, mashups and process applications on top of the platform. Less-successful PaaS offerings like those from Coghead, whose technology was built on Intalio’s software, were separate from an underlying application platform and found it harder to deliver on their promise (at least until Coghead was acquired by SAP).

It may take Intalio a few months to deliver on its PaaS vision, but the company is starting to get the right tools in place. What’s next on its shopping list? We would guess a mashup vendor.