Dell to acquire Quest Software for $2.4bn

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Hardware giant Dell has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire Quest Software for $2.4 billion, several weeks after rumours linking the two firms first surfaced.

Quest will become part of Dell's newly formed software group, and allow the firm to build out its systems, security, data protection and workspace management product portfolios.

Privately held Quest is reported to have posted revenues in the region of $857 million during 2011. It also claims to have 100,000 customers across the globe and 3,850 employees.

Before getting snapped up by Dell, the firm had racked up a number of its own acquisitions, including application compatibility vendor ChangeBase, storage player BakBone and virtualisation specialist Vizioncore.

Rumours of a tie-up between the two firms have been circulating for some time, with the most recent reports suggesting Dell was embroiled in a bidding war for Quest with a private equity house.

In a statement, John Swainson, president of the Dell Software Group, said merging with Quest will strengthen the firm's server, storage, networking and end user computing propositions.

"Quest's suite of industry-leading software products, highly-talented team members and unique intellectual property will position us well in the largest and fastest growing areas of the software industry," said Swainson.

In a letter to Quest customers, announcing the deal, the firm's chief executive Vinny Smith, said the entire team will be joining Dell.

"Dell is the third largest technology company in the world. They have chosen Quest because our focus on systems management and security align so well with their overall software strategy," he wrote.

"On a personal note, customers have always been our first priority...[that] will not change as we begin making this transition," he added.

Caroline Donnelly is the news and analysis editor of IT Pro and its sister site Cloud Pro, and covers general news, as well as the storage, security, public sector, cloud and Microsoft beats. Caroline has been a member of the IT Pro/Cloud Pro team since March 2012, and has previously worked as a reporter at several B2B publications, including UK channel magazine CRN, and as features writer for local weekly newspaper, The Slough and Windsor Observer. She studied Medical Biochemistry at the University of Leicester and completed a Postgraduate Diploma in Magazine Journalism at PMA Training in 2006.