RealTime IT News

Inktomi Sounds Off with Major Buy

Inktomi Corp. made a major play Wednesday by nabbing broadcasting software provider FastForward Networks for $1.3 billion in stock.

Inktomi will trade 11.9 million shares of common stock for all outstanding shares, options and warrants of FastForward Networks. The sum of the deal is based on Inktomi's Sept. 12 closing price of $111 per share.

What does a caching and search technology company want with a firm that lives to sound off online? To dip into media, of course. Inktomi wants to expand on the "content is king" theory with Wednesday's play after forming a "content bridge" with Adero and America Online Inc. in August.

In that deal, for which financial terms were not disclosed, Inktomi agreed to deliver infrastructure Adero promised to ensure updated content and billing while AOL simply promised to deliver it all across its network.

Inktomi said it feels Wednesday's deal will help it plunge into the media infrastructure field and enable the company to target the Net broadcast market, projected to reach $40 billion by 2003.

In scooping up FastForward Networks, Inktomi will offer a foundation for Net broadcasting to its content delivery networks and service provider clients.

FastForward Networks brings clients such as Digital Island and The Real Broadcast Network to the table. The deal also makes sense because both Inktomi and its new acquisition share clients.

FastForward Networks will operate under the Inktomi name as the Media Division led by president and chief executive officer of FastForward Networks Abhay Parekh. All employees of FastForward Networks will join Inktomi.

The transaction is expected to close in the quarter ending December 31, 2000.