Big tech companies bought hundreds of smaller players from 2000 to 2009, but to my mind only one acquisition stands out as the smartest purchase of the aughts.
My pick is EMC/VMware, because of the sheer impact that server virtualization is having on the technology industry. And because VMware currently owns this market, it gets credit for much of this impact.
As for EMC, the company gained a relevance and market power it would never have commanded as a plain old storage vendor. On the flip side, Microsoft, IBM, Oracle and others have the knives out for EMC/VMware like never before.
Full blog post here.