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Volume 9, Number 2 -- January 13, 2009

Infinite Software Buys HP Partner, Sues Another One

Corrected: January 13, 2009

by Alex Woodie

Infinite Software, the developer of migration and re-hosting tools for IBM i OS and other platforms, immersed itself deeper into the Hewlett-Packard world recently when it acquired a controlling interest in a Bay Area HP partner and sued the principals of another HP partner headquartered near Sacramento. However, most of that lawsuit was rejected by a federal judge last week.

Infinite Software, which previously went by the name California Software, last week announced that it has acquired a controlling interest in Roundstone Systems, an HP partner based in Oakland, California. Terms of the acquisition were not disclosed.

"Infinite is quickly becoming the fastest growing enterprise partner for HP in California," said Bruce Acacio, CEO of Infinite Software, which is based in the Southern California community of Laguna Niguel. "The Roundstone team adds great depth and knowledge of both the Bay Area market and HP's most sophisticated servers."

In mid-December, Infinite announced that it had been granted a preliminary injunction by a federal court in Los Angeles, California, against Fore A Partners and two of its principals, who were former employees of Infinite Software. Fore A Partners is an HP advanced partner based in Rancho Cordova.

Infinite Software claimed that the injunction prevents two principals of Fore A Partners "from selling to the customers of their former employer," or Altos Technology Group, which Infinite Software acquired in March 2008. The claim was made in a December 15 press release titled "Federal Court Slaps Fore A Partners, Anthony Baker, Mike McKee with Preliminary Injunction in Securities Fraud Action," which can be found at news.findlaw.com/prnewswire/20081216/16dec20082158.html and many other places on the Web.

In fact, according to court documents, the injunction was only upheld against Baker, not McKee. Baker is not allowed to solicit former Altos customers for 36 months, per the terms of his original employment agreement. Federal court judge Manual Real heard the case on December 15, but submitted his ruling on January 9, not in mid December, when Infinite Software distributed its press release announcing an early victory. The judge denied all of Infinite Software's other claims against Fore A Partners.

Infinite Software sued Fore A Partners in late summer. In the lawsuit, filed in the Western Division of U.S. District Court, Central District of California, the company alleged that the company and its principals were "engaged in a broad conspiracy to commit fraud for purposes of financial self-interest," according Infinite Software.

Fore A Partners distributed a press release Monday claiming a legal victory. "This means a great deal to Fore A Partners . . . " Baker said the press release, which was titled "Federal Court Denies Infinite Software/Vindicates Fore A Partners, Anthony Baker, Mike McKee" and can be viewed at http://www.prweb.com/releases/2009/01/prweb1849224.htm.

McKee says Fore A Partners will counter sue Infinite Software. "We have done nothing wrong and will prevail in the end," he says.

Infinite Software did not respond to an information request by IT Jungle.

Infinite Software has long served the IBM AS/400 (i5) market with a line of products, called Infinite iSeries, that enable customers to move RPG and COBOL applications originally designed for the OS/400 (i5/OS) platform to Windows, Linux, and Unix.

This article has been corrected. The federal court injunction prevents only Anthony Baker from pursuing previous customers of Altos Technology Group, but does not prevent Mike McKee or others from pursuing them, as the article previously stated. IT Jungle regrets the error.

RELATED STORIES

Infinite Software Partners with HP, Acquires Altos Technology Group

Infinite Software Updates Web App

Infinite Software Introduces New Features for App Migration Tool

California Software Rebrands Itself as Infinite Software



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