LogMeIn to acquire GoTo family of products from Citrix

Back in November, Citrix announced that it would spin out the GoTo family of products (see Citrix to spin out Goto products, will cut ‘investment’ in Podio). The company cut 1,000+ employees, and considered various options, under pressure from activist investor Elliott Management Group demanded changes. Today, the other shoe has fallen, with remote access software company LogMeIn announcing that it will acquire the kit-and-kaboodle from Citrix for $1.8 billion.
The deal has been approved by both companies, and will be structured as a ‘reverse Morris Trust’ which is a simultaneous spin out and merger, which will lead to a zero tax hit for Citrix.
The combined company should have revenues of over $1 billion.
It seems that the CEO of LogMeIn, Bill Wagner, believes in the synergies between a remote access software company and collaborative communications like the GoTo family, including GoToMeeting, GoToAssist, GoToMyPC, GoToTraining, GoToWebinar, Grasshopper and OpenVoice. Which, once upon a time, remote access software company Citrix also believed in. But now LogMeIn will be taking another run at that. (Or maybe there’s more synergy between companies that use capital letters to create HardToType company names?)
I think GoToMeeting and its siblings are in a crowded and commoditized market, with real pressure from the low end of the market by Google Hangouts, Join.me, Zoom, and others. I think Citrix has done well to walk away.
Not part of the deal is the somewhat-orphaned work media product, Podio, which is has been folded into the Cloud products at Citrix, like ShareFile. Citrix declared that it was decreasing its investments in that product in November, but not closing it down. In March, development for Podio was moved to Raleigh North Carolina.

Top Citrix sales exec will leave the company

Al Monserrat is stepping down as senior vice president of worldwide sales and service for Citrix.

Monserrat joined [company]Citrix[/company] 13 years ago as VP of field service, according to his LinkedIn profile. Carlos Sartorius, who ran sales in Europe, the Middle East and Africa for the company, has been named new sales lead at Citrix, and will report to CEO Mark Templeton. Monserrat will stay on as SVP of sales strategy until April 1 to ease the transition, the company said in a statement.

A former Citrix exec said Monserrat was one of the last of Citrix’s “old guard,” which also included former CMO Wes Wasson and former COO Gordon Payne, who both left in 2013. Payne is now COO at DocuSign. CFO Dave Henshall is the last of that veteran group of execs, aside from Templeton, who is still with the company.

Citrix led the charge in desktop virtualization and on Monday said it was buying Sanbolic, a storage virtualization specialist, to bolster that effort.


Citrix snaps up Sanbolic to ease desktop virtualization

Citrix, which has led the charge for desktop virtualization, just acquired Sanbolic to help bleed out the complexity and cost that have kept virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) from broader adoption. Terms were not announced.

Desktop virtualization separates what runs on a computer desktop from the physical computer itself so management, updates and patches can be more easily accomplished by a central administrator.

[company]Sanbolic[/company], of Waltham, Mass., specializes in software defined storage which works with a wide array of existing storage hardware.  It was already a close Citrix partner; [company]Citrix[/company] said 200 of its existing XenDesktop XenApp customers already use Sanbolic in house to attain high-availability and to manage infrastructure across regions.

With Sanbolic in-house, [company]Citrix[/company] can develop pre-packaged and pre-tested solutions to “help drive down the cost and complexity of VDI and application delivery deployments in a linear and predictable manner,” Sanbolic CEO Momchil Michailov said via email. Sanbolic, he added, enables customers to keep using existing storage arrays and infrastructure whether on-premise or in the cloud, including appliances for [company]Amazon[/company] Web Services (AWS), [company]IBM[/company] Softlayer, [company]Rackspace[/company] and [company]Microsoft[/company] Azure.

Michailov, who becomes Citrix’s VP of storage technologies, and Sanbolic’s other 30 employees will move to Citrix, according to a spokeswoman.

Citrix has been the standard bearer for desktop virtualization but has seen increased competition from [company]VMware[/company], the leader in server virtualization, which has juiced its efforts in this area over the past few years. But, both virtualization vendors are seeing increased competition from other software companies, including platform providers which are doing more of their own virtualization work.

Citrix buys Framehawk, ramping up virtual desktop wars


Citrix Systems(s ctrx)  is buying Framehawk to boost the performance of virtual desktops and applications over wireless networks, a key issue as more people use tablets and smartphones as primary devices. Framehawk technology will be used with Citrix HDX in XenApp and XenDesktop products, according to InfoWorld. Details on how that will happen and terms of the deal were not announced.

The news comes days after VMware(s vmw) hired a couple desktop virtualization execs away from Citrix and Citrix named Rakesh Narasimhan  to head its desktop virtualization effort.