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|Type||Defunct / absorbed by Software AG|
|Key people||Karl-Heinz Streibich, CEO|
|Products||ESB, B2B, BPMS, BAM, SOA Governance, Application Modernization|
webMethods is an enterprise software company, acquired by Software AG, focused on application integration, business process integration and B2B partner integration. Founded in 1996, the company pioneered the use of web services to connect software applications together within a single organization and across the Internet. In 2000, the company went public on the NASDAQ in the most successful software IPO to date, based on investor interest and first day share price appreciation. In 2002, the company was named by Deloitte as the fastest-growing software company in North America over the period 1998 to 2002. In 2007 webMethods was acquired by Software AG for $546 million, and made a subsidiary of that company. In 2010 the webMethods division of Software AG recorded over $668 million in revenues. Software AG retained the webMethods name, and uses it as a brand to identify a software suite encompassing process improvement, SOA enablement, IT modernization and business and partner integration.
The company was founded in 1996 by Phillip Merrick and Caren Merrick. Their idea was to use the new standards of the Web such as HTTP and (later) XML to allow software applications to communicate with one another in real time. This type of technology would later be referred to as "web services", for which Phillip Merrick and early employees Charles Allen, Stewart Allen and Joe Lapp would be awarded a patent. The first product, called the "Web Automation Server" was released in August 1996; this was later superseded by the "webMethods B2B Integration Server", which was the company's first product to see significant commercial success.
Winning early customers and investors while focusing attention on consumer usage of the Web was difficult, and the founders used their savings and credit cards to keep the company operating. However, by 1999 the company had attracted customers such as DHL, Dell, Dun & Bradstreet and Hewlett-Packard, and had completed several successful rounds of venture capital investment. In March 1999 the company entered into a major partnership with SAP AG to create an SAP-focused integration product called the SAP Business Connector. The company began growing rapidly, going from revenues of just over $0.5M in 1997 to $14M in 1999 and $202M in 2001, aided in part by the acquisition of Active Software in October 2000. In February 2000, webMethods went public on the NASDAQ in the most successful software IPO to date, based on investor interest and first day share price appreciation. In 2003 Deloitte recognized webMethods as the fastest growing software company in North America, placing it at No. 4 on the Deloitte Fast 500 list of fastest growing companies.
The company was an early leader in developing and promoting standards for web service technologies, having pioneered XML-RPC, a precursor to SOAP, and developed WIDL (Web Interface Definition Language), a precursor to the Microsoft-sponsored WSDL standard. Engineers from the company have chaired several W3C working groups, and co-authored and co-edited web services standards such as XML Schema and WSDL 1.2.
Software AG acquired webMethods in 2007 for $546 million and announced that the brand webMethods will be retained, effectively making webMethods its flagship product line. 2009 saw the release of webMethods version 8.0, supplemented with other Software AG products such as Centrasite, Tamino and EntireX. In 2010, the webMethods ("BPE") division of Software AG recorded $668 million (499M Euros) in revenues and was a major contributor to overall company net income of $292 million (218M Euros).
- 2006 Acquired Infravio and products from Cerebra
- 2003 Acquires The Mind Electric - Products: webMethods ServiceNet (SOA)
- 2003 Acquires Dante Group - Products: webMethods BAM
- 2003 Acquires former DataChannel assets from Netegrity - Products: webMethods Portal
- 2001 Acquired IntelliFrame Products:webmethods Workflow
- 2000 Acquired Active Software and partnership with J. D. Edwards for OEM Product JDE XPI. Gets EAI/A2A capabilities, Products: webMethods Broker and Adapters
- Active Software acquired Alier Inc., TransLink Software Inc. and Premier Software Technologies Inc.
- webMethods Business Process Management - BPMS
- webMethods SOA Governance
- webMethods B2B
- webMethods ESB - Enterprise Service Bus
Awards and Recognition 
- 2009-2011 Top rated MDM solution by The Information Difference.
- 2009 A leader in the Forrester Waves for Enterprise Service Buses, Q1, 2009
- 2008 A leader in the Forrester Wave for Integration-Centric BPM Suites, Q4 2008
- 2008 Placed in the Gartner Leaders Quadrant of the Magic Quadrant for B2B Gateway Providers
- 2008 Placed in the Gartner Leaders Quadrant for the Magic Quadrant for Application Infrastructure for SOA Composite Application Projects
- 2008 Placed in the Gartner Leaders Quadrant for the Magic Quadrant for Application Infrastructure for Back-End Application Integration Projects
- 2008 Placed in the Gartner Leaders Quadrant of the Magic Quadrant for Business Process Management Suites (BPM)
- 2008 Placed in the Gartner Leaders Quadrant of the Magic Quadrant for Integrated SOA Governance Technology Sets
See also 
- "LinkedIn's 109% pop on first day of trading isn't close to 'dotcom era' IPO jumps."
- "Deloitte Recognizes webMethods as the Fastest Growing Software Company in North America"
- "Software AG reports record results for fiscal year 2010"
- US Patent 7,028,312 "XML Remote Procedure Call (XML-RPC)"
- Businessweek: Phillip Merrick, CEO, Webmethods
- webMethods, Inc. S-1 Registration Statement
- webMethods, Inc. 10-K Filing 3/31/01
- "webMethods Acquires Active Software"
- "Using WSL in SOAP Applications"
- "SoftwareAG Acquires webMethods"
- webMethods to acquire infravio article
- eweek article on webMethods acquiring Cerebra
- webMethods to acquire technology from Netegrity article
- webMethods acquires IntelliFrame
- infoworld article about webMethods acquiring Active Software