Top Tech Acquisitions Of 2009

We track a lot of acquisitions on CrunchBase.  At the beginning of 2009, acquisitions were at a standstill.  But as the economy begrudgingly roused itself from recession, the deal flow started to pick up in the summer, and then rebounded more in the third quarter.  There are still a couple weeks left in the year, and a lot can still happen, such as Google buying Yelp for more than $500 million.  But with the year wrapping up, we put together an initial list of the top technology acquisitions of 2009.

We’ll update the list if necessary at the end of the year (for instance, we don’t include Yelp in our list because it is not yet final), but it is not likely to change by much.  Out of $64 billion worth of technology M&A Crunchbase tracked in 2009, about $54 billion went to the top 30 deals ((see table below).  These are only technology deals (Web, software, hardware, mobile) and do not include cleantech or biotech (nor do they include other industries Crunchbase tracks as well).

The largest announced deal, Oracle’s $7.4 billion purchase of Sun Microsystems, is still awaiting regulatory approval.  But it set the pattern for bottom-fishing during a financially difficult year.  Hewlett-Packard picked up 3Com for $2.7 billion (No. 9) and Intel bought Wind River for $884 million (No. 16), while Microsoft unloaded Razorfish for $530 million (No. 23).

Some of the more significant deals in terms of potential market impact include Amazon’s $1.2 billion shoe-buying spree with Zappos (No. 14), Google’s $750 million acquisition of mobile ad network AdMob (No. 20), and Cisco’s $590 million Pure Digital/Flip Video deal (No. 21). And social gaming saw a lot of activity this year.  Two days after Electronic Arts bought Playfish for $400 million (No. 27), competitor Playdom raised money at a $260 million (pre-money) valuation.

Other notable deals which didn’t make the top 30 include American Express paying $300 million for Revolution Money (which would have put it at No. 35), Intuit’s purchases of Mint (No. 45) and PayCycle (No. 46) for $170 million apiece, Google’s $106 million acquisition of On2 Technologies (No. 57), Facebook’s $47.5 million purchase of FriendFeed (No. 86), MySpace’s $20 million deal for iLike (No. 133), and Apple’s $17 million for LaLa (No. 143).

The top 30 tech M&A deals are below:

Company Acquirer price
1. Sun Microsystems Oracle Corporation $7,400,000,000
2. Affiliated Computer Services Xerox $5,750,000,000
3. Sanyo Panasonic $4,600,000,000
4. Marvel Entertainment The Walt Disney Company $4,000,000,000
5. Perot Systems Dell $3,900,000,000
6. Tandberg Cisco $3,400,000,000
7. Unitymedia Liberty Global $3,000,000,000
8. Starent Networks Cisco $2,900,000,000
9. 3Com Hewlett-Packard $2,700,000,000
10. Data Domain EMC Corporation $2,100,000,000
11. Omniture Adobe Systems $1,800,000,000
12. Varian Agilent $1,500,000,000
13. SPSS IBM $1,200,000,000
14. Zappos Amazon $1,200,000,000
15. Wind River Intel $884,000,000
16. iPCS Sprint Nextel $831,000,000
17. Interwoven Autonomy $775,000,000
18. Nortel Networks Ciena $769,000,000
19. AdMob Google $750,000,000
20. Pure Digital Technologies Cisco $590,000,000
21. WildBlue ViaSat $568,000,000
22. Razorfish Publicis Groupe $530,000,000
23. Virgin Mobile USA Sprint Nextel $483,000,000
24. Web Reservations International Hellman & Friedman $458,000,000
25. LifeSize Communications Logitech $405,000,000
26. Playfish Electronic Arts $400,000,000
27. BuscaPe Naspers $374,000,000
28. SpringSource VMware $362,000,000
29. BBN Technologies Raytheon $350,000,000
30. Retail Convergence GSI Commerce $350,000,000