Intalio, Early BPM Innovator, Acquired

Scott Francis
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Intalio was recently acquired by Everteam, an ECM vendor, of France:

The acquisition, which formally closed earlier this month, includes the sales, marketing, support and development infrastructure within Intalio. As part of the acquisition, the company has expanded its base of operations in Boston, Massachusetts.

“We believe now is the time to reignite our efforts at global expansion and in particular, the US, and we are choosing to do this in a decisive, strategic manner,” said Béchara Wakim, President of Everteam. “The technology behind Intalio|bpms is complementary to Everteam’s ECM offering, and together I see the potential to offer a superior business application with significant global market.”

Intalio was an early BPMS vendor and open source contributor that didn’t get picked up in the round of acquisitions in 2009-2011, nor did it grow to critical mass, but my understanding is that Intalio|bpms is being used more widely in Japan.

It’s another example of an ECM vendor acquiring a weaker BPM vendor.  Their goal is to crack the US market with this acquisition, but that’s a tough row to hoe.  Intalio doesn’t have a large install base here, and there are pretty well entrenched ECM solutions in the US.  Still, it may now be a necessity for ECM vendors to augment their process capabilities in order to compete or hold their own.

Intalio was an early proponent of BPEL (when I was at Lombardi, we were early proponents of BPMN instead, and I remember some fairly epic arguments between the BPEL and BPMN crowds – note: the BPMN folks won). 

Interestingly, Intalio was one of the first BPM vendors to shift its focus to “building applications” rather than writing processes.  Unclear whether it was the wrong strategy, or the timing was too early, or just something about the offering missed the mark.  These days we see Pega and Appian touting a more application approach, as well as K2 – and if not applications, the tools to build them.