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IBM announced this morning that it has entered into an agreement to acquire Netezza, a company that focuses on data warehousing and business analytics, for approximately $1.7 billion.

The deal is still subject to Netezza shareholder and regulatory approval and is expected to close in the fourth quarter of this year. IBM will pay $27 a share for the company, which closed at $24.60 a share on Friday.

Netezza provides analytics inside of a data warehousing appliance, which can handle complex analytic queries “10 to 100 times faster than traditional systems.” The deal is an extension of the companies’ existing partnership:

Today, Netezza designs and develops its appliances on IBM systems technology and combined with IBM software powers many applications within organizations.  The two companies have been strategic partners for many years focused on workload optimized systems that deliver integrated systems, software and storage for analyzing vast amounts of complex data.

The acquisition will bolster IBM’s own analytics offering — the company intends to integrate Netezza into its Information Management software portfolio.

Based in Marlborough, Mass., Netezza has around 500 employees worldwide. The company has raised $68 million since it was founded in 2000.

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