IBM announced it has acquired CIMS Lab, Inc., a privately held software company based in Roseville, California. Financial details were not disclosed.

CIMS Lab is a leading provider of software that helps businesses track the usage of computing resources across virtualized technology environments - such as servers, storage, email, networks, databases, applications and operating systems. The software gathers raw data about information technology (IT) resource usage and converts it into organized financial information that can help companies more easily understand how their technology resources are being consumed across a virtualized infrastructure consisting of many platforms and systems.

An accurate view of software and hardware usage helps organizations determine how computing virtualized resources are being used, what that usage costs and how much departments should be charged. For example, a bank may have several different businesses - commercial loans, mortgage branch, retail banking - that share software applications and storage devices. CIMS Lab's software provides information that helps the bank to determine how much usage should be billed back to each department, which helps to better allocate future IT spending.

Also, companies deploying a service-oriented architecture (SOA) can use CIMS Lab software to track and bill for IT usage as services travel across a vast and open IT infrastructure.

The acquisition of CIMS Lab complements IBM's portfolio of management software for virtualized technology. Virtualization helps make it simpler and less expensive for companies to integrate and improve the performance of hardware, software, storage and networks in open and heterogeneous environments. It enables governments, banks, retailers and other organizations to view and manage their many virtual IT resources as one, and dynamically change and adjust them across their IT infrastructures accordingly.

According to a recent survey by IT market research firm IDC, spending on virtualization will grow to nearly $15 billion worldwide by 2009, with more than three-quarters of all companies with 500+ employees deploying virtual servers. The companies surveyed also expect that 45 percent of new servers purchased in 2007 will be virtualized.

Resource accounting with CIMS Lab software extends IBM's IT service management portfolio to financial management. With IT service management, companies can reduce technology complexity through automation and process integration and more easily comply with business policies and regulatory mandates.

CIMS Lab has more than 170 customers worldwide in industries such as financial services, government, healthcare and manufacturing.

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