From an IBM reality check by Charles Fitzgerald; also see IBM Bets $34 Billion That Red Hat Can Help It Catch Amazon and Microsoft | NYT
"Beyond the financial outlay, acquisitions are hard. Most fail. Big acquisitions are really hard. Execution and integration risk go up with the size of the deal. This is the biggest acquisition ever in technology. IBM has done 182 acquisitions in the 21st century and have very little to show for their $52 billion. IBM’s CEO crows that her experience buying and integrating PWC for $3.5 billion mitigates the risk (she neglects to mention her experience buying and vaporizing SoftLayer for $2 billion). Conflating an order-of-magnitude smaller professional services acquisition with a product and technology acquisition might be the deepest insight into what IBM has become (not a product company).A Very Cold Take on IBM, Red Hat and Their Hybrid Cloud Hyperbole | Platformonomics
But if the strategic logic is to “change everything” thereby “resetting the cloud landscape”, they’re really paying over $34 billion for OpenShift. Which is a vanilla container runtime. That is open source. That IBM already had at least one of (as does everyone else in the industry, including the hyper-scale clouds). And one that isn’t a dominant brand or implementation. IBM could have bought both Docker and Pivotal at a nice premium for a quarter the price of Red Hat and gotten better assets if that is the strategy."