Facing increased competition from the likes of Baan Co NV, SAP AG and Peoplesoft Inc, Irving, Texas-based i2 Technologies Inc is to simultaneously ‘merge’ with two other companies in the supply chain management software business. The $100m a year software provider wants to use pooling of interests to account for both the transactions and so the deals are to be done with paper, not cash. Company number one is Think Systems Corp of Parsippany, New Jersey whose shareholders will receive 3.9 million shares in i2. Company number two is Optimax Systems Corp of Cambridge, Mass. for which i2 will issue 1.4 million shares. The combined value of the deals is approximately $200m based on Wednesday’s closing share price. i2 has had close ties with Think Systems in the past, the two companies combining on an OEM agreement back in January 1996 and the merger is seen as the next step in the partnership. Since both the new acquisitions are within i2’s own market area, the logic behind the moves is cost savings and product synergies. The twin deals are the latest occurrence in a phenomenal growth streak which has seen i2’s revenue increase seven fold in the last seven quarters.