WSJ.com - IBM Plans to Acquire Ascential for $1.1 Billion: "Ascential, based in Westboro, Mass., makes software tools that help companies extract data from various sources, reformat it and transport it to other software programs. The company has close ties to IBM, which resells its products and bought a large part of Ascential's business four years ago.
In 2001, IBM paid $1 billion to buy the database business of rival Informix Corp. The transaction left behind a much smaller company, renamed Ascential, with a significant cash hoard. As of Dec. 31, Ascential had $480.7 million in cash and investments, so IBM's net purchase price is closer to $600 million."