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IBM Red Hat Acquisition: How to prepare your ITAM organisation?

On October 28th, IBM announced their acquisition of Red Hat. What will this mean for SAM/ITAM? We dove into the subject, and we have some recommendations for you.

How to prepare right now

IBM acquisitions commonly consist of multiple phases, each with their own legal aspects. Fully integrating software brands into IBM can take up to a couple of years. In this particular case a full integration will not take place earlier than the latter half of 2019. Until integration, signed existing contracts with Red Hat will be respected including the original agreed Terms and Conditions.

As a result, no consequences are expected on a short term notice.


However, Softline Solutions recommends to take preparatory actions. These actions enable your organization to create an informed impact analysis regarding your license position and possible financial consequences:

  • Identify and register Red Hat contracts and licenses, including maintenance and support;
  • Identify and register Red Hat products installed on your infrastructure;
  • Reconsider your cloud strategy;
  • Contact IBM and Red Hat for further information regarding their roadmap;
  • As of 2019, take special care of upcoming IBM and Red Hat maintenance renewals and intended purchases.


Long term expectations

The first step in integrating Red Hat software into IBM’s software portfolio, is transferring existing contracts and products to a portal called FCT (Flexible Contract Type). Products in this temporary portal, will be adhered by IBM with the original Red Hat Terms and Conditions.

As a second step IBM will probably try to integrate the Red Hat products into the IBM software product portfolio and will most likely start rebranding (blue washing) the Red Hat products.

As the third and final step IBM will probably try to migrate the original Red Hat contracts to an IBM PassPort Advantage (PA) agreement. After this migration is accepted by the customer, the products will be regular IBM products with PA Terms and Conditions, including a possible migration of license metrics according to IBM standards.



Softline Solutions can support your organisation in taking the recommended preparatory actions, to detect and prevent possible future financial exposure. If you are interested in finding out how we can help you, do not hesitate to contact us

Softline Group Northern Europe | Keywords: IBM, Red Hat, Software Asset Management, License Management, Software Management