Feeds

Valley open-source star swallowed by Black Duck

Pulling power ain't what it used to be

Boost IT visibility and business value

SpikeSource –a Silicon-Valley startup once blessed by big names and championed as the future of making money on open-source – has shut-up shop after seven years.

The assets of SpikeSource have been bought by Black Duck Software. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Welcoming the deal was Ray Lane, managing partner of venture fund Kleiner Perkins Caulfield and Byers, SpikeSource board member, and the person who incubated the company in 2003. He called SpikeSource a "natural fit" with Black Duck.

In 2003, Lane was just out of Oracle, where he'd been president and chief operating officer and left as Larry Ellison sought to extend his power over the database giant. Still with KPCB, Lane is now Hewlett-Packard chairman and has been having a run in with his former boss as a result.

With Lane's star power driving SpikeSource in the early 2000s, the company attracted some big tech-industry endorsements. Kim Polese was brought on as CEO just after launch. Polese was in the original Sun Microsystems Java line up as a company product manager, and she was one of the tech industry's few female CEOs, having then just served as chief executive of push-technology startup Marimba, which she co-founded in 1996.

The company's advisory board included CollabNet founder and chief technology officer Brian Behlendorf, former MySQL CEO Marten Mickos, and IP law attorney Lawrence Rosen.

The idea was simple: test and integrate popular open-source software components and sell certified stacks back to people. The opportunity was the complexity of managing open source inside big operations. Or so it seemed.

"Each time a Fortune 50 company picks up a new component it creates a new integration challenge," Polese told The Reg when all things seemed possible.

While appealing in concept, the business didn't flow, and it turned out that companies were happy making the bits and bites work themselves. Or maybe the community would do it. Or maybe large middleware and platform vendors took care of the ironing.

The only other company of note in this market was SourceLabs, which got $3.5m funding and was finally bought by EMC in summer 2009.

After seven years, Lane and others will have been looking for pay back and/or exit on SpikeSource. This is Black Duck's second acquisition in three months. Earlier this year, it nabbed Ohloh.net.

Black Duck said in a statement that the SpikeSource and Ohloh.net deals further its mission to "promote FOSS adoption by making it easier for developers to take advantage of the growing body of high-quality code in FOSS projects."

In the SpikeSource deal, Black Duck's getting SpikeInsight, an online service to identity application components and assess security vulnerabilities, SpikeForge - which consists of 17 open-source project - a group of forums, and some virtualization management technology. Black Duck provides code and license compliance tools for open-source software. ®

Build a business case: developing custom apps

More from The Register

next story
Video of US journalist 'beheading' pulled from social media
Yanked footage featured British-accented attacker and US journo James Foley
Caught red-handed: UK cops, PCSOs, specials behaving badly… on social media
No Mr Fuzz, don't ask a crime victim to be your pal on Facebook
Ballmer leaves Microsoft board to spend more time with his b-balls
From Clippy to Clippers: Hi, I see you're running an NBA team now ...
Kate Bush: Don't make me HAVE CONTACT with your iPHONE
Can't face sea of wobbling fondle implements. What happened to lighters, eh?
Amazon takes swipe at PayPal, Square with card reader for mobes
Etailer plans to undercut rivals with low transaction fee offer
Microsoft exits climate denier lobby group
ALEC will have to do without Redmond, it seems
Assange™: Hey world, I'M STILL HERE, ignore that Snowden guy
Press conference: ME ME ME ME ME ME ME (cont'd pg 94)
Call of Duty daddy considers launching own movie studio
Activision Blizzard might like quality control of a CoD film
US regulators OK sale of IBM's x86 server biz to Lenovo
Now all that remains is for gov't offices to ban the boxes
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Top 10 endpoint backup mistakes
Avoid the ten endpoint backup mistakes to ensure that your critical corporate data is protected and end user productivity is improved.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Rethinking backup and recovery in the modern data center
Combining intelligence, operational analytics, and automation to enable efficient, data-driven IT organizations using the HP ABR approach.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.