RealTime IT News

Viant Accepts $96M divine Intervention

divine , a Chicago incubator turned software seller, will buy Viant , a Boston Internet consultant, in a deal uniting one-time Internet high-fliers who have had to adapt to survive.

The stock transaction is valued at $96 million ( 3.997 shares of divine for each share of Viant). Another $24 million cash could be added to the purchase price if certain conditions are met.

"Viant's expertise in deploying collaborative technology solutions that enable knowledge sharing with customers, partners and employees represents a perfect strategic fit with divine's solutions for the extended enterprise," said Andrew 'Flip' Filipowski, divine's chairman and CEO.

In addition, Viant provides divine with a significant (albeit smaller in recent years) new consulting presence in the Northeast.

"We see this combination with divine as providing even greater resources and enhancing the services and solutions we can deliver. In particular, we see great opportunities to leverage divine's international capabilities and product offerings to better serve our clients," said Bob Gett, Viant's chairman and CEO.

Viant was founded in 1996 and like others in the sector raced to a fast start designing sites for venture-rich startups. When the dot-com crash came, however, many of its clients failed and Viant found itself overextended.

It jettisoned employees and real estate and focused on signing large, stable clients, a difficult task with a stumbling economy. The company currently has operations in Boston, Los Angeles, and New York.

For divine, the Viant deal is the latest in a Bay State shopping spree. Earlier this year it bought Cambridge, Mass., search engine Northern Light.

In May it paid $19 million for RoweCom, of Westwood and four months later ponied up $43.2 million for Eprise, of Framingham.