Acquisitions in Silicon Valley Rise; Some Add, Others Delete IT Jobs

There are more mergers and acquisitions taking place in Silicon Valley this year than a year ago. Some are expected to result in new IT jobs, but others will result in a net loss of positions as the acquiring firm sheds redundant workers.

Acquisitions in Silicon Valley Rise; Some Add, Others Delete IT JobsOne example of the former is Jigsaw, a San Mateo firm with about 140 employees that was recently purchased by Salesforce.com for $142 million. A leader in crowd-sourced data services, including real-time business contact data, Jigsaw is poised to add staff as a result of the deal. Founder Jim Fowler told the San Jose Mercury News his company "already had an aggressive hiring plan, and Salesforce is going to throw rocket fuel on that."  

Less clear is the impact of Symantec’s $1.2 billion purchase of VeriSign’s authentication and verification division. With about 2,200 employees worldwide, VeriSign wouldn’t comment on how many workers will be left with when the dust settles. (The Mercury News reported VeriSign would have a workforce of about 1,000 by year-end.) For its part, Symantec says it expects to keep about 900 people from the acquired division. If the Merc’s figure is accurate, it would mean a net loss of about 300 jobs.

Jive to Quadruple Workforce, Relocate to Silicon Valley

One of the hottest technologies today is social media, including what’s called business social media. The best known company in the space is LinkedIn. Another fast-growing player – and on that’s on a hiring jag – is Jive.

Formerly based in Oregon, Jive is moving its headquarters office to Palo Alto to be closer to software engineering talent. The company plans to expand its staff from the current 50 to about 200 over the next 18 months. Jive creates collaborative and social software that enables the employees of large companies to connect with each other, as well as with outside customer groups. 

Large Tech Firms Hiring

Silicon Valley’s rebound continued in April as unemployment dropped in Santa Clara and San Mateo counties, and hiring picked up in technology manufacturing, according to California’s Employment Development Department.

Reflecting the upturn, several large technology companies were hunting for qualified IT professionals in the last week or so. Among them are Adobe Systems, Alcatel-Lucent USA Inc., Flextronics, Sony Ericsson, and Intuit.

— Doug Bartholomew

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