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Fifty shades of BMC

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BMC appear to be having a dizzy spell, a funny five minutes.

Firstly, they declare to the world they are for sale.

“BMC Software ($43.38, +$1.89, +4.56%) shares rose after sources told The Wall Street Journal that the company has been in contact with potential buyers, including private equity firms. The report comes after the firm was urged earlier this year by major investor Elliott Management to seek a sale.” Wall Street Journal, 1st October 2012.

“Bankers have approached potential suitors including software companies and large private-equity firms to see if they are interested in buying BMC or a part of it” CNBC 1st October 2012

What company does that in public?

Investors wanting their ball back and not wanting to play anymore is par for course, but I find it very strange to declare to the world that they want to sell ‘all or part’ of the business.

So it’s a possibility that BMC gets broken up into bits and sold, yard sale fashion, for whatever investors can glean.

What kind of message does this send to employees, let alone the sales pipeline? Perhaps they already have an offer on the table and investors are openly prostrating themselves to the market for a counter bid. Potential suitors include IBM, Oracle, Dell or private equity firms.

Dance Like Your Dad

Secondly, Last week BMC had a marketing mid-life crisis in what appears to be a desperate attempt to appear relevant to potential investors. BMC have borrowed phrases and logos from Apple, the most valuable company of all time.

‘Industry First – BMC Software Transforms the Service Desk Into a ‘Genius Bar’ experience.’ Nasdaq.com, October 11th.

2 minute BMC Video

Relevance at any cost?

Genius Bar? It’s embarrassing. It’s like watching your Dad dance at a party with died hair and botox. Where’s the true understanding of the market and the value the company can bring? Not to mention the flagrant violation of Apple trademarks.

If they really want to capture the current zeitgeist and lure fickle investors maybe the ITSM suites should be called:

‘Fifty shades of IPad-Tweet-X-Factor in the Cloud’?

Uncertain Future

Idle speculation and jaded cynicism aside, the people I feel sorry for most in this whole shambles are the good folks working the cogs at BMC.

Who wants to work for a company that publishes a press release openly stating they are open to breaking the company into pieces, asset strip and maximise shareholder return, especially in the current climate with families to feed and mortgages to pay.

I recognise the importance of venture capital to accelerate growth and build the appropriate resources to build good teams in this industry – but for pity sake – does it have to be such short-term nonsense? How about a bit of leadership?

Martin Thompson

Martin is owner and founder of the The ITAM Review and The ITSM Review.

Martin is also founder and Chair, Campaign for Clear Licensing. A contributor to the British Computer Society (BCS) Configuration Management Group and contributor to the UK itSMF UK Service Transition SIG. Learn more about him here and connect with him on Twitter or LinkedIn.

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  • http://twitter.com/stephenmann Stephen Mann

    Doh, I’d planned a blog called 50 Shards of ITIL (that is shards not shades)

    • http://www.facebook.com/paul.rutledge.923 Paul Rutledge

      “Shards” or “Sharts”?

  • http://www.facebook.com/paul.rutledge.923 Paul Rutledge

    Love all the BMC / Apple references…given none of their solutions run on OS X.

    I’ve got a buddy who works on a Mac in IT at an Enterprise; then has a POS Windows box on the side, simply to work with Remedy tickets. o_O

    • itsmreview

      MyIT is available in the Apple app store