Thursday, March 5, 2015

BMC moves to the forefront in DB2 Utilities with CDB acquisition

By Rich Ptak and Bill Moran

BMC has been a leader in delivering DB2 utilities for nearly 30 years. In recent years, mainframe DB2 utility customers have voiced their need for faster completion times, lower execution costs, shorter or no outages at all along with multiple requests for more functionality to keep up with the demands of the digital enterprise. BMC saw an opportunity to both address these needs and raise the bar in improved cost and performance results

In its response, BMC had to choose between in-house development and acquisition. Redesigning and rewriting the DB2 utilities would be costly and time consuming, risking potential erosion in market share. Acquisition offered a quicker and potentially more cost-effective solution, assuming the right company was available.

BMC knew CDB as a small, but successful competitor selling DB2 utilities. Using recent technologies, CDB delivered a set of leading-edge products that were both competing with and complementary to existing BMC’s utilities. In an all-cash transaction, BMC acquired CDB’s products, programming assets and select personnel; keeping key personnel from CDB will facilitate future development of DB2 utilities.

What does this mean to BMC’s customers? As we see it, the key message continues the good news following from BMC’s privatization. The new owners are aggressively investing not only in BMC, but also in what they recognize as good opportunities in the mainframe business. In our opinion, mainframe customers can look forward to a continuing flow of new mainframe products and technologies. This is good news for BMC’s current as well as all mainframe customers, as increasing competition drives product improvements. It also should motivate non-BMC customers to consider BMC products.

Here are some details of the acquisition. The combined companies’ products include both overlapping and complementary DB2 utilities. These are classified as follows: Load, Unload, Reorg, Copy, Recover, Check and Statistics collection. The challenge lies in combining and integrating the best of the CDB offerings with the best of the BMC offerings into what BMC calls Next Generation Technology (NGT).

Plans are for BMC Copy, Recover, Check and Statistics to be combined with CDB offerings for Load, Unload, and Reorg. Future releases of LOBMaster and Real-Time Utility Manager will complete the package. The new platform will include extended automation capabilities to ease the workload on already stressed mainframe staffs.

Existing BMC utility customers will have immediate access to the equivalent new technology by simply contacting their account management teams. The details of upgrades and offerings in other customer scenarios are still being worked out.

By midyear 2015, BMC plans to be able to offer all existing customers the opportunity to investigate the new technology. Customers will be able to evaluate and consider a complete migration at their own pace.

By the end of 2016 or early 2017 (timed to coincide with an expected new DB2 release), BMC plans a fully integrated BMC and CDB utility suite supporting the new DB2 release.

Timelines for some offerings to CDB customers will be handled on an individual basis. BMC plans to treat them comparably to their own existing customers. For those with neither BMC nor the CDB products, separate packaging will be available

We think that this deal benefits all parties. The BMC customers get access to new technology that speeds up the reorg process and eliminates even the seconds-long downtime that BMC’s current reorg requires. CDB customers will be happy as BMC introduces new automation functions and they gain access to BMC technology where it is superior to CDB.

In addition, CDB customers will now be dealing with a larger company and they will no longer have the risks associated with a very small supplier. BMC gains with even more competitive products able to leverage a quantum leap into the latest, proven technology.

We believe that the only companies who don’t gain are BMC’s competitors. But, we expect the resulting competition to bring even more good news for customers over time.