Which technology mergers and acquisitions within and across the IT channel turned the most heads in 2016? The answers may surprise you. Here are 10 M&A deals and buyout chatter that drove the most ChannelE2E readership in 2016.
10. Symantec Buys Blue Coat: The deal set the stage for multiple changes at Symantec, including new CEO leadership and a range of executive shifts.
9. Ingram Micro Acquired for $6 billion: The surprise deal links Ingram Micro to a Chinese logistics giant, while also protecting the distributor from Wall Street's quarterly shot clock. The most important piece of information for Ingram's partners? It's business as usual for the distributor.
8. SolarWinds Acquires LogicNow: The deal essentially merged N-able with LogicNow to form SolarWinds MSP -- one of the largest providers of IT automation software for MSPs.
7. Citrix Exits CloudStack: Citrix's decision to sell its CloudStack business essentially told us what we already knew... CloudStack couldn't keep up with OpenStack and certainly wasn't going to displace public cloud options like Amazon Web Services.
6. KKR Acquires Optiv Security: The private equity firm paid a hefty premium to acquire the IT security solutions provider. Terms of the deal were never publicly announced... but ChannelE2E's coverage tracked down all the financial details for readers.
5. Kaseya Buys Vorex: Kaseya extended from RMM (remote monitoring and management) to PSA (profession services automation) with this deal. The key competitive targets, no doubt: Autotask and ConnectWise. I haven't heard of major PSA migrations toward Kaseya since Vorex was acquired, but the overall Kaseya business grew 50 percent this year, the company asserts.
3. Dell Sells IT Services Business: Readership for this piece was particularly strong because folks wanted to know whether Dell planned to sell off more assets -- particularly Quest and SonicWall. The ultimate answer was "yes." Indeed, Dell sold multiple assets to strengthen its balance sheet ahead of the massive EMC buyout.
2. HP Enterprise Software Sale: CEO Meg Whitman and her executive team worked multiple months to find a buyer for portions of HPE's software business. The net result involved a new venture with Micro Focus.
1. Who Will Buy Avaya?: It's the question partners and customers kept asking throughout the year, especially amid Avaya bankruptcy rumors. So far, Avaya's private equity owners haven't found a buyer for the struggling company.
Track all VAR, MSP and CSP buyouts by visiting the ChannelE2E Milestones section each business day.