Antivirus software maker Sophos announced that it has acquired ActiveState, a Canadian-based maker of spam-filtering tools and programming tools for developers. Sophos will acquire ActiveState and all of the company's stock for $23 million dollars.

Sophos will retain all ActiveState's employees as well as the company's headquarters, which Sophos will use to expand it's research and development. ActiveState President Steve Munford will become a member of Sophos' executive management team.

ActiveState serves more than 2 million customers, including Intel, Microsoft, and HP. All ActiveState product lines will continue to be sold under the ActiveState brand.

Sophos plans to integrate its antivirus software solution into ActiveState's PureMessage enterprise antispam. PureMessage is currently available for AIX, HP-UX, FreeBSD, Linux, and Solaris platforms. Sophos also offers its MailMessage solution, which protects Lotus Notes, SMTP servers, and Microsoft Exchange servers from virus infection.