Oracle to buy AmberPoint

Oracle announced Monday an agreement to buy AmberPoint, a vendor of SOA management and governance tools. An Oracle representative said the company's Fusion Middleware stack would benefit from AmberPoint's ability to diagnose issues in application performance and business transactions.

Oracle announced Monday an agreement to buy AmberPoint, a vendor of SOA management and governance tools. An Oracle representative said the company's Fusion Middleware stack would benefit from AmberPoint's ability to diagnose issues in application performance and business transactions.

"AmberPoint is not used to manage application servers per se, instead it is used to monitor the business context of transactions going back and forth," said Dennis Callaghan, Senior Enterprise Software Analyst, The 451 Group. Callaghan said that Amber Point had recently expanded from an earlier focus on SOA governance to cover overall issues of transaction management.

"On most SOA implementations, no one piece of middleware is in control," said Jason Bloomberg, managing partner at ZapThink, LLC. "As a result AmberPoint has these agents distributed throughout the network, which is a key point of their technology."

Jason Bloomberg, managing partner with Zapthink LLC said that AmberPoint's software's ability to monitor distributed business transactions was likely a key in Oracle's decision to buy.

"That's always been a strength of AmberPoint technology," said Jason Bloomberg, managing partner with Zapthink LLC. "With distributed agents they can monitor transactions that touch multiple pieces of middleware."

The AmberPoint suite would likely become part of a performance tool line at Oracle that includes technology purchased in 2008 along with app performance software maker ClearApp.

Oracle did not disclose financial details behind the deal. AmberPoint is an established player in the SOA governance tool market and has more recently placed itself as an overall manager of composite applications.AmberPoint in October announced an application governance system for the Oracle suite.

Oracle has not traditionally had a strong stand-alone product for SOA management, said Randy Heffner, analyst, Forrester Research. Oracle's SOA management products, such as Enterprise Manager and Grid Control, have been targeted at established Oracle shops customers, he indicated. This purchase could lead Oracle toward offering a stand-alone product with stronger application runtime management features, said Heffner.

[Includes reporting by Jack Vaughan]

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