Agilera Sends Message With Acquisition

In a move that promises to strengthen its hosted messaging and collaboration offerings, full-service enterprise ASP Agilera Inc. today announced that it has acquired United Messaging Inc., a Malvern, Penn.-based ASP that specializes in hosted Microsoft Exchange, Lotus Notes/Domino and other Internet-based messaging applications.

The acquisition is a stock-only transaction and the combined company will operate under the Agilera name.

Agilera’s CEO Rob Unger told ASPnews that United Messaging is “an excellent fit and a good complement to Agilera’s J.D Edwards, Oracle, Lawson and Peoplesoft application services.” Agilera also currently offers hosted Microsoft Exchange. “This will add more depth and more breadth to something we already do,” Unger said.

This combined company, according to Agilera, will provide a combination of technical, professional and application support services. The services will either be hosted by Agilera or managed remotely.

“Right now our primary goal is to make this transparent to UMI’s client base,” Unger told ASPnews. In terms of United Messaging employees and where they will be based, Unger said, “We’re not sure yet. We’re still in the planning process. There are a lot of skilled folks there that we need in the practice.”

In addition to its headquarters in Colorado, Agilera operates a 20,000-square-foot data center in Columbia, S.C. Some United Messaging employees could be relocated there, Unger said.

For all the practical benefits in terms of new customers and expanded services, the symbolic meaning of the acquisition is equally important to Agilera. “The economy has been bad,” Unger said. “This is a growth message.”

Agilera was founded in 1996. Its investors include Web hosting and Internet services giant NTT/Verio.

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