IXOS Board Blesses Open Text Bid. This deal was announced a few weeks ago but I'm just getting around to the topic. This deal, along with EMC's acquisition of Documentum, signal further consolidation of the enterprise content management space. I believe that this general area will be a major growth area for the software industry over the next several years.
We've been laying the infrastructure for managing and taking advantage of structured data for more than thirty years while most organizations only began wrestling with unstructured data (i.e. various forms of digital content, including documents, images, internal web site content, video, etc.) in any enterprise sense in the past five to so years. We've proliferated non-integrated systems for storing/managing unstructured data at the personal, work-group, departmental, business unit, and enterprise levels. With 80% to 90% of enterprise data being unstructured - and with huge growth rates - the unstructured data management (UDM) problem has become a major pain point in most enterprises.
The overall UDM space combines (relatively) mature technologies like content management with less mature technologies, or with technologies that were not overly successful in their first iterations, such as enterprise search, knowledge management, collaboration/social software, text mining and analytics, federated database management, etc. We're going to see lots of growth in some of these technologies as independent products/markets and as they are merged into the platforms for more mature technologies like content management.