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IBM and BladeIBM announced today that it has entered into an agreement to purchase Blade Network Technologies, a company that specializes in networking switches for data centers.

Terms of the deal were not disclosed, but a source familiar with the news said that it was valued at around $400 million, according to Tech Trader Daily.

Blade offers embedded and top-of-rack Ethernet switches that are low power, low cost, and low latency. It also provides software “to virtualize and manage cloud computing and other workloads.” Its customers include more than half of the companies on the Fortune 500 list. Blade products are used on over 50 percent of IBM System x BladeCenters — making the company a good match for IBM.

The acquisition gives IBM expertise at the systems networking level “to enable clients to speed the delivery of key information from system to system — for workloads such as analytics and cloud computing — while also reducing data center costs.”

Blade was founded in 2006 and is based in Santa Clara, Calif. The company’s investors include NEC, Juniper Networks, Garnett & Helfrich Capital, and a silent “technology industry leader.” Blade was valued at $230 million in its last round of funding.


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