BMC partners for data synchronization

BMC Software Inc. is set to announce a partnership next week with data synchronization vendor GoldenGate Inc., allowing it to integrate that company’s software with BMC’s own line of database management tools.

GoldenGate’s software is used by large businesses to synchronize information stored in databases in multivendor environments. Its customers include Bank of America Corp., which used the software to keep its customer account information up to date across its systems while it upgraded the infrastructure behind its network of automated teller machines.

The software can also be used for keeping data warehouses current for real-time decision support, and keeping back-up systems up to date for disaster recovery purposes.

Terms of the non-exclusive alliance allow BMC to market, sell, price and support GoldenGate’s software almost as if it were its own, said William Donahoo, a vice-president with BMC’s enterprise data management division. Pricing will be similar to that of GoldenGate’s, he said, although BMC can offer packages of products, which could mean a lower price.

BMC also plans to integrate the software with its SmartDBA tools, meaning database administrators will be able to access the GoldenGate software from the same console they use to run SmartDBA. BMC will also provide the first line of support for joint customers, meaning they can deal primarily with one vendor, Donahoo said.

“When a customer buys the product they buy it from BMC, and they do it on BMC paper with a BMC license, then BMC and GoldenGate have negotiated an agreement that allows us both to be ‘interested parties’,” Donahoo said, declining to elaborate on the financial terms of the deal, which is to be formally announced Sept. 2.

Analysts looked favourably on the partnership. Database administrators need a reliable way to move data quickly between databases in multivendor environments, and the BMC-GoldenGate deal should make life easier for them, said Richard Ptak, principle of Ptak & Associates Inc., in Amherst, N.H.

GoldenGate’s software works with more than 50 databases, Ptak noted. The focus with BMC will be on the platforms supported by its management tools including Oracle Corp., IBM Corp., Microsoft Corp., Sybase Inc. and MySQL.

For GoldenGate the deal provides a much broader distribution channel for its products, particularly overseas, while BMC is able to offer its customers a “mature technology” that it didn’t already have, said Steve McClure, a vice-president with International Data Corp.’s software research group.

Both analysts said the partnership should strengthen BMC’s position against its rivals, which include Quest Software Inc. Success will depend partly on how well BMC trains its sales and support teams on GoldenGates’s products, and on how well it manages to integrate the software with SmartDBA, they said.

BMC only briefly considered acquiring privately-held GoldenGate, a move that would have had both “pros and cons,” Donahoo said. In the end it decided the terms of its partnership were more favorable than an acquisition, he said.