A week before its annual customer conference, OpenText has struck a deal to buy a business to business cloud integration specialist.

The Waterloo, Ont., company said it will buy privately-held GXS Group Inc. for US$1.165 billion.

The deal “strengthens [OpenText’s] information exchange pillar with the addition of market leading cloud-based B2B integration services,” CEO Mark Barrenechea said in a statement. He said it also expands his company’s enterprise information management buying centers and overall strategy with the addition of cloud-based managed services.

GXS’s cloud-based B2B integration services is used by more than 550,000 trading partners to integrate and manage business processes and transactions across global networks of customers, partners and suppliers, the company said.

Its platform, called GXS Trading Grid, is aimed at helping businesses to streamline new product launches, digitize accounts payable, automate warehouse receiving, conduct e-invoicing and e-payments and increase global supply chain visibility.

Barrenechea told financial analysts that Trading Grid will complement OpenText’s EasyLink cloud electronic message and business integration service. He also hopes there will be cross-selling of product opportunities between the two companies’ customer bases. He said GXS counts fifty per cent of Fortune 1000 enterprises as customers.

Barrenechea and GXS CEO Bob Sergert are expected to talk up the benefits of the takeover at OpenText Enterprise World 2013, which starts Nov. 17 in Orlando. However the highlight of the conference will be the unveiling of Project Red Oxygen, which will integrate a number of OpenText [TSX: OTC] products that have been sold separately.

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