International Business Machines Corp. on Thursday announced it has signed an agreement to purchase FilesX, a local privately-held data protection company. It is the software giant's second acquisition of an Israeli start-up this year. "The FilesX acquisition would complement IBM's vision of enterprise data protection by adding critical capabilities for remote offices, delivering continuous data protection for applications and servers, and supporting business user needs with nearly instantaneous recovery of data," said Al Zollar, general manager of Tivoli software at IBM. "It would also reinforce IBM's mid-market strategy by adding a simple and easy-to-use full-data protection solution - one that also is attractive to enterprise remote offices and departmental situations," he said. In what represented its largest acquisition in Israel, IBM in January purchased XIV, a privately-held storage technology company based in Tel Aviv, for about $300 million, to meet growing demand for digital archiving. According to recent media reports and industry sources, IBM's storage division is also in talks to snap up another Israeli start-up, Diligent Technologies Corp., which was founded by former EMC chief executive Moshe Yannai, who joined IBM after the XIV acquisition. The companies would not put a price on the FilesX deal, but according to information obtained by The Jerusalem Post, it was valued at between $70m. to $100m. Under the terms of the deal, FilesX technology will become part of the Tivoli Storage Manager (TSM) family of products, IBM's flagship suite of leading data protection and information infrastructure offerings. With its patented technology, FilesX helps IT staff restore data from virtually any type of failure and from nearly any point in time. Ease of use and self-managing features make FilesX offerings particularly attractive in environments where IT skills and budgets are limited. "Following the close of the transaction, the combination of FilesX's strong data protection and recovery software with IBM's existing storage management products will enable customers to better safeguard their most critical information," FilesX CEO Jimmy Garcia-Meza said. "FilesX customers can benefit from the broad resources IBM has committed to growing the storage management part of its business, and will continue to receive support under their existing agreements," he said. For IT managers dealing with the pressures of data growth, and for chief compliance officers seeking better data controls, the acquisition is expected to enable IBM to offer an end-to-end data protection solution from laptops to remote or branch offices, data centers and disaster recovery sites. FilesX has more than 100 customers in the United States and Israel, in the government, education, health care, financial services and manufacturing sectors.