IBM Buys Diligent for Estimated $200M

A Globes article published today reported that IBM has bought Israeli storage solutions developer Diligent Technologies Corporation for an estimated $200 million.  The acquisition comes just one week after the computing giant bought FilesX for $70-90 million (see post). 

IBM is snatching up Israeli startups left and right–  It recently acquired XIV, partnered with Siverge and is keeping its eye on the mysterious Ctrue.  From Globes:

“Diligent Technologies is closely linked with XIV executive chairman Moshe Yanai, who is now responsible for storage development at IBM. Yanai and Diligent chairman and CEO Doron Kempel co-founded the company as a spin-off of EMC Israel in 2002. EMC Corp. (NYSE: EMC) still owns 20% of Diligent, which develops solutions for one of the hottest fields in data storage – the prevention of duplicating files when they are backed up (de-duplication). The company’s solutions enables data storage facilities to back up only changes made in files, rather than duplicate the entire file, thereby eliminating redundancies to save space and memory mechanisms.

According to IVC Online, Diligent Technologies has raise $50 million. Its shareholders, in addition to EMC, include Accel Partners, Gemini Israel Funds, Eastward Capital Partners, and Matrix Partners.”

Handset Start-Up Modu Secures $100M

modujackets.jpgCellular technology start-up Modu Ltd., which is valued at $150 million, has secured $100 million in funding commitments from investors, according to Globes. It’s still trying to raise additional funds and is continuing to present to local and overseas investors. The company was founded just 18 months ago by Dov Moran, a seasoned entrepreneur who founded and sold M-Systems to SanDisk for $1.6 billion.

Modu, which has previously raised $20 million from Gemini Israel Funds and Genesis Partners, has developed a cellular handset that can upload all forms of data from telephone numbers to multimedia files via USB from any computing device. It uses a unique memory technology and also incorporates Flash memory technology.

The Modu itself is a mini-cellphone that can slip into a variety of “jackets”, created by Modu or by third parties, that turn the Modu into a larger phone with different unique capabilities. It can also be used just to provide connectivity to larger consumer devices already existing in the market.

For example, the Modu can be slipped into a “music jacket” to create a phone with strong music capabilities. Or it can be used in a camera to make a camera phone that actually has a good camera. Moran says that many types of jackets will be created and envisions users changing jackets frequently, like one does with clothes or fashion accessories.

Cellcom has announced that it would exclusively market the Modu handset in Israel. Modu is also in advanced negotiations on marketing agreements with leading global cellphone and handset manufacturers.

See a cool video on Modu here.