Virtualization Technology News and Information
Is Citrix Attempting to Sell Itself? Would it be a Good Acquisition for Dell?


It's been a few months now since Citrix first made noise about making some game changing shifts within its hallowed halls after investment firm Elliott Management took on a considerable stake in the company and with it gained a seat on the board.

As a board member and investor, Elliott has reportedly been pushing Citrix to sell off assets that it claims aren't aligned with what it considers Citrix "core products."  As part of that re-alignment, Citrix has already agreed to sell or spin off its popular "GoTo" Web conferencing product line.  Other makeover changes include the possibility of divesting what some are calling under performing products such as CloudBridge, CloudPlatform and ByteMobile.  The NetScaler product line is also part of that reassessment as Citrix tries to understand whether or not it truly belongs as part of the company's core product line.  And finally, let's not forget about what feels like the pushing aside of a fan favorite and longtime chief executive officer Mark Templeton, who said he would retire once a successor is found.

Instead of breaking itself up and selling off the pieces, it sounds like given the choice, Citrix would prefer the idea of selling off the entire company as one unit.  But with a market capitalization of $11.6 billion, does it carry too high a price tag for someone to buy the whole enchilada? 

That doesn't appear to be stopping Citrix if the rumors are true.  They appear to be taking a last ditch effort to try and sell itself before it is forced to sell off assets as requested by Elliott, according to a Reuters report.  The report also has Citrix engaged in buyout talks with private equity firms and some technology companies.  One of those potential shoppers has been rumored to be the Texas based PC manufacturer, Dell.  But from the outside looking in, there seem to be some questions with that possibility.

For one, Dell already has a suite of virtualization products that it gained from the Quest Software acquisition.  So yes, there are some obvious crossover products between the two sets of assets, but honestly, when has that stopped anyone from buying up another company?  Especially if it takes another competitive piece off the board, or enhances what someone already has in play. 

Case in point, Dell already has its own VDI technology from Quest called vWorkspace.  But from what I understand, Dell sells more VMware Horizon and Citrix XenDesktop than it does its own vWorkspace solution. So maybe that's a meh.

Something to consider, however, is that because Dell sells a lot of VMware products, the underlying question remains... can Dell afford to alienate VMware as a partner?  And would an acquisition of one of VMware's biggest competitors do exactly that?

On the flip side, Dell is transforming itself from a hardware business to a hardware and software business.  And buying Citrix would accelerate Dell's software business in a big way.  So a Dell acquisition would make sense for a number of reasons:

  • It would give Dell their own high definition protocol, Citrix HDX.  And that alone could give their Wyse Thin Client division a major boost against the competition. 
  • With the added lineup of virtualization software, Dell's Thin Clients could play a much bigger role in the enterprise market.
  • A Citrix acquisition would also give Dell a much better Enterprise Mobility Management solution -- Citrix XenMobile -- which could replace Dell's Enterprise Mobility Management offering which doesn't seem to have gained much market share, comparatively.  
  • Citrix NetScaler could also launch Dell into the networking arena and give them instant credibility.
  • And Dell could increase its subscription revenue with the addition of Citrix GoTo products and other SaaS services

Again, maybe some or all of this is just rumor and speculation.  Neither Citrix or Dell has confirmed any of this yet.

But if not Dell, who else could potentially find interest in acquiring Citrix?  Could it be the long standing rumor of Microsoft making a play?  Or what about Cisco?  HP could have been a contender as well but that seems unlikely what with the company undergoing its own split as it separates its PC division from its enterprise products and services. 

What do you think?  Is this much ado about nothing?  Or does this story have some meat on the bone?

Published Tuesday, September 29, 2015 6:18 AM by David Marshall
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Zoe455 - (Author's Link) - September 29, 2015 6:25 AM

No that's not good for citrix..

Dell Announces Acquisition of EMC for $67 Billion : @VMblog - (Author's Link) - October 12, 2015 11:14 AM
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