Sun Microsystems acquired Critical Path's mainframe rehosting business. The combination of Critical Path's mainframe rehosting software and Sun's Solaris Operating Environment will help IT organizations reduce operational costs by migrating from costly mainframes to Sun servers while preserving their existing CICS applications. As part of the acquisition, Sun obtained Critical Path products, currently known as Trans, Batch, and PATH/3270, and will continue to provide support for Critical Path's installed base in the near term. As the employees, sales teams, and support teams that support the Critical Path mainframe rehosting business are integrated into Sun's Computer Systems Product Group, Global Sales organization, and Enterprise Services organization, they will develop formal product roadmaps and strategies that align with Sun's overall product and business objectives. Sun will account for this acquisition as a purchase, and the financial impact of the transaction on Sun's earnings is expected to be immaterial.

Although Sun has been successful in capturing new applications from mainframes because of the company's Independent Software Vendor (ISV) portfolio, many data centers in markets such as insurance, banking, manufacturing, retail, and government still rely on inhouse CICS back-end applications. The acquisition will give Sun increased access to a large number of established, mainframe-centric customers.

Sun's recently announced Sun Fire 15K server and Critical Path's mainframe rehosting "middleware" will let companies run their existing transaction-processing and batch applications on Sun servers without rewriting their mainframe CICS code. Companies can thereby reduce mainframe hardware and software costs without abandoning existing investments in business rules and processes.