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Cisco Buys Jabber
Jabber’s an open source play so it’s unclear how Cisco will handle Jabber’s open source business model

Right after buying Linux e-mail server house Postpath for $215 million, Cisco said it was buying the 50-man Denver-based Jabber Inc, a commercializer of the eponymous open source IM project, for its collaboration portfolio.

Terms were not disclosed. Neither was the fact that Jabber’s an open source play so it’s unclear how Cisco will handle Jabber’s open source business model. Intel, France Telecom and Webb Interactive Service put $7.2 million in the thing back in 2003 and Jabber is believed to have had revenues of $2.9 million last year. Webb started it in 2000 and said that given the acquisition it expects to be able to make a cash distribution of approximately 32 cents a share to its shareholders.

Cisco says the acquisition will let it embed presence and messaging “in the network” and give users rich aggregation capabilities through both on-premise and on-demand solutions across multiple platforms including Ma Cisco’s WebEx Connect and Unified Communications.

Cisco senior VP Doug Dennerline, head of its Collaboration Software Group, said Cisco wants to the “interoperability benchmark in the collaboration space.” Jabber is supposed to extend its reach and expand the capabilities of its collaboration platform.

Cisco calls Jabber carrier-grade and highly scalable. It interoperates with Microsoft Office Communications Server, IBM Sametime, AOL AIM, Google and Yahoo.

Jabber customers include HP, FedEx and Wells Fargo. There are supposed to be tens of thousands of Jabber servers, which offer security and archiving, on the Internet. Adobe bought Jabber competitor Antepo, but it’s more likely a move against Microsoft and – according to the New York Times – a lurch into cloud computing.

Postpath natively interoperates with Exchange and Outlook; no plug-ins. It also competes with Google’s calendaring as well as Gmail.

Cisco figures collaboration is a $34 billion market.

About Maureen O'Gara
Maureen O'Gara the most read technology reporter for the past 20 years, is the Cloud Computing and Virtualization News Desk editor of SYS-CON Media. She is the publisher of famous "Billygrams" and the editor-in-chief of "Client/Server News" for more than a decade. One of the most respected technology reporters in the business, Maureen can be reached by email at maureen(at)sys-con.com or paperboy(at)g2news.com, and by phone at 516 759-7025. Twitter: @MaureenOGara

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