RUMOR: IBM and EMC In A Bidding War For SoftLayer Technologies

International Business Machines and EMC Corporation are currently in talks to buy out database web hosting company SoftLayer Technologies.  The deal could hit as high as $2 billion.  Based in Dallas, Texas, SoftLayer hired Morgan Stanley and Credit Suisse to find bidders for the company.

SoftLayer is the world’s largest privately held website hosting company by providing over 25,000 customers with cloud infrastructure.  SoftLayer primarily works with SMBs as their customer base.

The idea for a sales came about when AT&T approached SoftLayer for exclusive talks.  AT&T is no longer a potential buyer.  SoftLayer has around 100,000 servers under management and competes against Citrix Systems.

GI Partners holds a majority of SoftLayer shares.  They purchased all of the equity in SoftLayer with other SoftLayer management executives in August 2010.  In November 2010, GI Partners merged SoftLayer’s biggest competitor The Planet with SoftLayer.  GI Partners already held a controlling interest in The Planet hosting company.

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