Wow - I never expected SpringSource to acquire Covalent, but it definitely seems like a good match. From Rod Johnson in Some Decisions are Easy – Like SpringSource Acquiring Covalent:
Today we announced our acquisition of Covalent Technologies. Not only does Covalent bring Apache leadership, but our combined company now has significant leadership on Apache Tomcat and HTTP. Two weeks ago, Sun paid $1bn for the "M" in LAMP. Now that Covalent's outstanding Apache expertise and services are part of SpringSource, we are strong leaders in the “A”. We have always been about technology leadership, so we’re very excited about what we can do together with Covalent. Over the last few years, Covalent has earned a great reputation in the marketplace with its support for Apache projects, including Tomcat and Apache HTTP. Its hundreds of support customers include more than half of the Fortune 500, and household names like Pfizer, Johnson & Johnson, British Telecom (BT), NASA, Intel, Royal Bank of Scotland and Bear Stearns. Our announcement today begins a new phase in the history of our company, and–I believe—the rapidly changing application platform market.
Dana Blankenhorn adds some additional interesting information on this acquisition:
Johnson said the purchase also keeps SpringSource from being bought by Sun, although skeptics will say it also makes it more attractive to Sun.
“We have a good relationship with Sun. We had very good relations with mySQL. Now that Sun is an open source company it really would work, it’s a natural opportunity” for Sun to work with SpringSource.
“We do think, however, this is the best way to stay independent.”
The deal may also say something about the opportunity in third-party support. Covalent has been around for about a decade, offering support services for products written by others, yet the much-younger SpringSource scaled right past it.
This definitely seems like a good move for SpringSource. As many Spring users know, Tomcat is an excellent server for hosting scalable applications when you're using Spring. My current client uses both Spring and Tomcat heavily and has been quite pleased with both solutions. As for the Covalent folks, they seem happy too, so what's there not to like?
Congrats to both SpringSource and Covalent - I wish you the best of luck.