Progress Software Corporation Announces Acquisition of Actional Corporation

Merger with Sonic Software operating unit extends leadership in SOA infrastructure with web services visibility and run-time governance.

BEDFORD, Mass.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Jan. 19, 2006-- Progress Software Corporation (Nasdaq: PRGS), a global supplier of application infrastructure software used to develop, deploy, integrate and manage business applications, has agreed to acquire privately-held Actional Corporation for approximately $32 million, net of cash acquired, in cash and shares of Progress common stock. Actional is a leading provider of Web services management (WSM) software for visibility and run-time governance of distributed IT systems in a service-oriented architecture (SOA). Upon the closing of the transaction, Actional will become part of Sonic Software, the inventor and leading provider of the enterprise
service bus, and an operating unit of Progress Software Corporation.

Every enterprise making the transition to SOA can greatly benefit from Actional's products, whether they are initiating their first project, or have fully deployed a large-scale SOA production environment. Actional's SOA visibility and run-time governance ensure alignment between IT and business, by providing real-time monitoring and analysis of business processes, and by employing security and policies to manage and optimise any enterprise SOA implementation. Actional's technology provides these capabilities with extremely low overhead and minimal impact on system performance.

Unlike competing products, Actional Looking Glass(TM) provides end-to-end business process visibility across any SOA deployment. Using Actional's non-intrusive Ghost Agents and unique process tracking technology, Looking Glass automatically discovers services and message flows through the SOA network, and dynamically maps and monitors each and every step for unprecedented SOA visibility and insight. A wide range of usage and performance metrics are captured and correlated for governance, troubleshooting, and process optimisation. Beyond monitoring individual services, Looking Glass automatically detects and monitors business transactions as they flow across a wide variety of application servers, databases, and network appliances.

Actional SOAPstation(TM) is a SOA intermediary that dramatically reduces the costs and complexity of deploying and managing SOA projects. Through active mediation of SOA-based business transactions, SOAPstation provides policy-based security and access control, service level agreement (SLA) management and enforcement, and minimises the impact of system changes on service uptime by providing proactive, non-disruptive impact monitoring and control.

The pairing of Sonic's SOA Suite and Actional's products--each an established, best-of-breed SOA product line in its own right--establishes Sonic as the market's leading provider of platform-independent, enterprise-grade SOA infrastructure software.

Sonic has successfully established Sonic ESB(R) as the preferred platform to connect, mediate and orchestrate services in an enterprise SOA environment. Actional's platform-agnostic approach to SOA visibility and run-time governance supports SOA environments using enterprise service buses (ESBs), application servers, or other technologies. The Actional and Sonic products can be used independently of one another, or combined to support the entire SOA lifecycle from service definition and deployment, to process definition and staging, to runtime visibility and real-time optimisation.

"Like Sonic, Actional has been an innovator and pioneer of SOA," said Greg O'Connor, president of Sonic. "Now that most enterprises acknowledge the business agility and operational efficiency benefits of SOA, we see that there are many organisations with clear needs for Web services management. A thorough analysis of the WSM market revealed that Actional had far and away the most advanced feature set as well as the most robust, scalable and high performance WSM infrastructure.

"ESB and WSM complement each other perfectly," O'Connor said. "Sonic's SOA Suite offerings provide best-of-breed infrastructure for end-to-end, distributed execution of business processes across SOA implementations.

Actional WSM technologies add system and process-level visibility as well as policy enforcement to Sonic's product mix, allowing Sonic to address a much wider range of customer needs as they implement their SOA strategies," O'Connor concluded.

"Progress has created an impressive portfolio of sophisticated and robust SOA technologies," said Tom Ryan, chief executive officer of Actional. "Our proven product line delivers the missing ingredient: the management and visibility to ensure that every SOA project, no matter what technologies are used, is a successful one. We're excited to join forces and create the dominant SOA infrastructure solution in today's rapidly expanding SOA market."

In addition to the Sonic and Actional product lines, Progress Software provides an event stream processing (ESP) platform, and expects to provide mainframe SOA integration after the completion of the pending acquisition of NEON Systems. Progress believes no other vendor is bringing together such an all-encompassing array of products designed to tackle issues critical to the success of enterprise SOA. ESP optimises business process execution within an SOA environment by analysing events in real-time and initiating instantaneous automated action based upon business-defined rules. NEON's Shadow RTE products allow enterprises to incorporate mainframe applications--where many mission-critical enterprise transactions run--directly within their SOA environments,
with full security and operational robustness.

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