CSIRO has announced the sale of its Funnelback search engine technology company to content management company Squiz.
Funnelback was developed by CSIRO and the Australian National University, originally under the name of P@noptic.
'It is always marvelous to see technology developed by CSIRO ICT scientists successfully commercialised and ultimately helping to grow a successful Australian SME business,' Dr Alex Zelinsky, Director of CSIRO Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) Centre, says.
Funnelback's flagship product, Funnelback Enterprise, is an integrated, industrial strength search solution that searches content assets across internet, intranet, database and shared network drives, as well as electronic document management and portal systems. It is used in some of the most demanding web environments by a broad range of customers including the Australian Securities Exchange, Oxfam, Westpac, the Australian Broadcasting Corporation and Australian state and federal government departments.
Squiz is a privately owned global content management company and the authors of the MySource Matrix, an open source content management system used by governments, universities and corporations.
Karl Rodrigues, Investment Portfolio Manager for CSIRO says the sale of Funnelback demonstrates effective commercialisation where CSIRO incubated an Australian business and then worked diligently to find a suitable Australian SME partner to take the company to the next level of commercialisation.
'Funnelback have produced some really innovative technologies and Squiz is the right partner now to bring their offering to the world stage. I see this acquisition as a tremendous opportunity for both Australian companies,' Mr Rodrigues says.
Squiz Managing Director and founder John-Paul Syriatowicz says the Funnelback and MySource Matrix products complement each other extremely well.
'We have a great many customers in common so it makes sense to bring the two organisations closer together,' Mr Syriatowicz says.
'As organisations continue their inevitable move towards browser-centric information management, powerful, fully integrated search will play an increasingly important role in content management. I believe 2010 will herald a fundamental shift in the content management systems and search marketplace as clients and vendors realise the two are inseparable. Trying to treat them as discrete solutions simply doesn't work.'
Former Chairman of Funnelback Stephen Kirkby says the sale gives Australia a strong globally competitive IT company.
'The merging of these two successful Australian IT companies bodes well for their clients and future prospects as they will have access to best of breed technology and staff,' Dr Kirkby says.
'Funnelback with its strong scientific CSIRO-based intellectual property (IP) foundation, combined with Squiz's commitment to best of breed service on the open source platform, gives Australia a strong globally competitive IT company.'