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February 22, 2014

Wheelings & Dealings: M&A Week in Review

By Tracey E. Schelmetic, TMCnet Contributor

It’s the conclusion of a busy week from the mergers, acquisitions and financing front. We’ll take a moment to highlight some of the most critical below.

This week, mobile workforce management solutions provider ClickSoftware Technologies announced it has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire Xora, a cloud-based market specialist in mobile workforce management. ClickSoftware’s Service Optimization Suite is a mobile field service solution that allows for planning and forecasting, scheduling and analytics.

BeyondCore, a company with applications that automatically analyze data sets to identify the strongest correlation between variables, has received $9 million in series A round of venture capital to further the company's vision of making big data analytics available to a wider audience. This round of funding was led by Menlo Ventures and it comes one year after the company officially launched.

Sonus Networks may have been open to talking about what’s new in SBCs at ITEXPO last month, but it was less keen on talking about its plans to acquire Performance Technologies at the time, because the deal had not yet closed. Well, the acquisition has now been successfully completed and so details of the deal, financial or otherwise, are being shared.

Cloud application security company Elastica has made its debut with a brand new solution and the announcement that it has raised $6.3 million in Series A funding from the Mayfield Fund. The company’s CloudSOC solution secures cloud applications and services for use by companies and their employees.

Google (News - Alert) Capital, a new growth equity fund backed by Google, has made its foray into education with a $40M minority stake in Renaissance Learning. Renaissance Learning, an education technology start-up, is owned by British private equity firm Permira and provides cloud-based education software, including reading and assessment tools that the company says are used by nearly 20 million students and teachers.

Due to the fact that Bit9 needs to keep up to date, it has raised $38.25 million in new funding. These funds have come from its existing investors that include such companies as Atlas Venture, Highland Capital Partners, .406 Ventures, Sequoia Capital (News - Alert), and Kleiner Perkins. In addition to its new round of capital funding, Bit9 has also acquired a San Antonio, Texas-based security startup called Carbon Black. The details of this acquisition have not yet been disclosed.

Yahoo's buying spree carries on, as the company recently picked up a firm known as Distill. Though the company was working on a rather exciting product in its own right, the reports indicate that Yahoo doesn't seem particularly interested about the product in question, and plans to bring in a completely new operation for the Distill crew.

News from Tokyo is that Japan’s largest e-commerce company, Rakuten, Inc., will purchase Cyprus-based application maker Viber Media. Rakuten is looking to expand its overseas region. With the acquisition of Viber’s 280 million global customer base in 193 countries, you can see how this is a move in that direction.

Like the service providers to which it sells, GENBAND (News - Alert) wants to be more than just an underlying infrastructure provider. It wants to move up the stack to also provide more applications like real-time communications solutions. In its latest effort to enable this transformation both for itself and its customers, GENBAND has revealed plans to acquire uReach Technologies. The deal, for which the details were not disclosed, is expected to be finalized in early March.

Comcast’s buyout of Time Warner (News - Alert) has many far-reaching implications. One of the most obvious among the implications in the $45 billion buyout (expected to succeed by almost all accounts) will mean that overnight, Comcast (News - Alert) will become the top cable provider and ISP in the United States’ largest city. That can be either a good thing or a bad thing for the residents of NYC.

That all for this week in Wheelings & Dealings. Have a great weekend!

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