Get complimentary access to the latest Gartner® SAM & FinOps Research report.


The Most Noteworthy Software Publisher Acquisitions of All Time

Our license experts provide a current snapshot of the publisher Merger, Acquisition & Divestiture (MAD) landscape—which companies own one another and what that might mean when it comes to auditing.

In our recent eBook Managing a Software Compliance Audit, we explored some of the events that might trigger a publisher to audit. One of these included when publishers themselves are involved in merger and acquisition activities. If a software publisher is acquired, for example, then the acquisitor will often want to take stock of what they have purchased and establish clear visibility of the lines of revenue in their customer base.

It can be worth keeping an eye on your software publisher’s year-end results too, as a poor result may see a software publisher looking to recoup losses by employing aggressive auditing tactics. Publishers who are struggling to achieve earnings targets might also implement commercial models, such as an audit policy of customers who demonstrate spend shrinkage or zero true-ups.

Ultimately, if there is money or misuse of software to be found, like any other business, auditors will look for it; compliance audits are first and foremost a revenue-generating exercise.

Our Anglepoint license experts have collated the following view of the current landscape to help you understand which companies own one another and the date the acquisition took place. Take a look to see which of your publishers are on the list. The more recent ones will also certainly present a higher risk in terms of the acquisitor gaining control of the newly owned IP. The older ones (Like NetIQ and Altris) may very well be discontinued and out of support. If you haven’t already taken preventative measures around these publishers, then it’s worth carrying out a little housekeeping.

Publishers and who they own

We will keep this list updated so it’s certainly worth bookmarking the page and checking in from time to time to stay abreast of any new acquisitions that may affect your compliance position!


  • Apptio – July 2023 – This article outlines the reasons behind the acquisition and insights for the future.
  • RedHat – July 2019

Broadcom is an American multinational designer, developer, manufacturer, and global supplier of a wide range of semiconductor and infrastructure software products. They include:

Quest is a privately held software company headquartered in Aliso Viejo, California, United States. Quest provides cloud management, software as a service, security, workforce mobility, and backup & recovery. Originally Dell Software, the company rebranded in 2016 as Quest Software. In 2021 they were then bought out by Clearwater Capital

Hexagon. This aggressive acquirer has purchased more than 170 companies over the last 21 years. The companies included here are the most recent and/or the strongest brands:

OpenText Corporation (styled as opentext) is a Canadian company that develops and sells enterprise information management (EIM) software. They are now the fourth largest software company and include:

  • Hummingbird– Oct 2006
  • Captaris – Nov 2008
  • Actuate – Jan 2015
  • Recommind – July 2016
  • Dell EMC (Enterprise Content Division – Documentum, InfoArchive, LEAP) – Sept 2016
  • HP (Customer Experience – Explore, MediaBin, Optimost, Qfiniti, TeamSite) – May 2016
  • HP (Customer Communications Management – Exstream, LiquidOffice, Output Management, TeleForm) – Aug 2016
  • Guidance – Sep 2017
  • Liaison – Dec 2018
  • Carbonite – Dec 2019
  • Xmedius – Mar 2020
  • Zix (integrated into Webroot and Carbonite) – Dec 2021
  • MicroFocus – Jan 2023, including the following acquired companies:

Siemens is a German multinational conglomerate corporation and the largest industrial manufacturing company in Europe. They own:

Cloud Software Group. Vista Equity Partners and Evergreen Coast Capital are private equity firms that bought both these companies and created a new group – Cloud Software Group

  • Tibco – Sep 2022
  • Citrix – Sep 2022

Veritas is an American international data management company headquartered in Santa Clara, California. They demerged from Symantec in 2016 and they have acquired a few smaller companies since:

Cisco is an American-based multinational digital communications technology conglomerate corporation headquartered in San Jose, California

  • Splunk – September 2023 – This article outlines the details behind the acquisition.

If you would like more information on what triggers an audit and how to create robust action plans, check out our eBook, Managing a Software Compliance Audit.

If you would like to discuss your audit risk and remediation with one of our experts, get in touch with us here.

Would you like to learn more about how we help with ITAM Program Transformation

Related Resources

Let’s start a conversation.