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Cherwell acquires Express Metrix

Will any software vendor be able to deliver best of breed ITAM and ITSM in one solution? [Meeting of North and Baltic Sea]

Will any software vendor be able to deliver best of breed ITAM and ITSM in one solution? [Meeting of North and Baltic Sea]

Cloud based ITSM vendor Cherwell Software has acquired ITAM vendor Express Metrix.

We’ve seen continued convergence between ITAM and ITSM over the last few years and increasing overlap between our two sister sites The ITAM Review and The ITSM Review.

From the ITAM side of the fence, IT Asset Managers are telling us that their role is increasingly being merged with ITSM. Our recent ITAM salary survey supports this with a marked shift towards ITSM related reporting lines.

From the ITSM side of the fence we’re seeing Asset and Config pop up as the next thing to tackle on the projects list. Organizations have perhaps got Incident, Problem and Change underway and are looking to push their ITSM function along the maturity curve by opening up the Pandora’s box that is Asset Management.

The ITAM market is being driven by four major market forces:

  • Fantastic innovation and Moore’s law in the datacentre
  • Consumer-led demand
  • Software publisher audit activity
  • and a general economic environment of austerity and increasing demand for transparency

These four forces mean that modern ITAM tools need to handle a multiple platforms and devices, complex license types and include licensing smarts for the top publishers. Many organizations on the hunt for ITAM tools soon realize that most ITSM tools don’t cut the mustard. They focus too much on configuration management and overlook the enormous financial impact of managing licensing properly. Specifically – what financial impact will this change request make?

In my opinion nobody is really exploiting the potential between ITAM and ITSM to it’s fullest extent. For example BMC might do an Asset Register and ITSM but miss the real market demand for SAM. ServiceNow are beginning to get there but mostly prop up the missing elements with partners. EasyVista have roots in the ITAM space but again the focus is on Asset register rather than SAM. FrontRange came very close when they bought former market leader Centennial Software but then appear to have lost interest.

It certainly looks like Cherwell have an opportunity for market leadership. Express Metrix, based in Seattle,  are a SAM tool veteran with two primary routes to market:

  • Express Software Manager – SAM tool with real focus on ease of use
  • Apptria – their software recognition library sold as an OEM to other software companies such as IBM, BMC Software, ASG Software Group, Kaseya, Miradore and New Boundary Technologies.

Both CEOs on the announcement:

Vance Brown, Cherwell CEO said

“Software license management and IT asset management are key pain points for our business technology customers and prospects,” said Vance Brown, CEO of Cherwell Software. “The addition of this strong, innovative technology from Express Metrix enables Cherwell to offer a more comprehensive service management solution with the power to manage our customers’ key corporate assets. We will enable our customers in IT to have insight into both CapEx and OpEx costs. They need the tools to determine where waste exists so they are not managing or licensing multiple versions of the same commodity software.”

Kris Barker, Express Metrix CEO said

“We’re very excited to be joining an innovative, fast-growing company,” said Kris Barker, CEO and co-founder of Express Metrix. “Cherwell’s commitment to investing in and delivering world-class technology, along with its unwavering dedication to customer success, make this an ideal partnership for Express Metrix and its customers.”

Two best of breed tools coming together like this presents an interesting opportunity which I hope they really deliver on. Having a solid SAM tool embedded within a solid ITSM tool for one price certainly provides Cherwell with a competitive differentiation. I look forward to seeing their roadmap for developing their full ITAM proposition.

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About Martin Thompson

Martin is owner and founder of The ITAM Review, an online resource for worldwide ITAM professionals. The ITAM Review is best known for its weekly newsletter of all the latest industry updates, LISA training platform, Excellence Awards and conferences in UK, USA and Australia.

Martin is also the founder of ITAM Forum, a not-for-profit trade body for the ITAM industry created to raise the profile of the profession and bring an organisational certification to market. On a voluntary basis Martin is a contributor to ISO WG21 which develops the ITAM International Standard ISO/IEC 19770.

He is also the author of the book "Practical ITAM - The essential guide for IT Asset Managers", a book that describes how to get started and make a difference in the field of IT Asset Management. In addition, Martin developed the PITAM training course and certification.

Prior to founding the ITAM Review in 2008 Martin worked for Centennial Software (Ivanti), Silicon Graphics, CA Technologies and Computer 2000 (Tech Data).

When not working, Martin likes to Ski, Hike, Motorbike and spend time with his young family.

Connect with Martin on LinkedIn.


  1. I hope this is a positive move for Express Metrix customers – from my experience when SAM / ITAM developers are acquired by ITSM focussed businesses, the development and commitment to the ITAM business and technology isn’t as strong as it was – look at the lack of development of the FrontRange License Manager solution, which had the potential to be market leading

  2. Thanks for sharing your thoughts on this, Martin. We have always been of the opinion that ITAM and ITSM need to go together and we have a decade of experience bringing both together. Finally others seem to get it as well.

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