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Dell buys storage firm

First acquisition sees Dell move upmarket

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Dell threw itself into the storage market fray yesterday, by splashing out $300 million-plus on ConvergeNet Technologies. Dell will exchange around 6.9 million shares for all outstanding shares and options of the Californian storage networking company. The deal -- Dell’s first acquisition -- values ConvergeNet at $340 million, based on yesterday’s closing share price. The buyout of the privately-held company is expected to be completed within 60 days. Dell will record a one-time charge against post-tax earnings of between five and seven cents per share. ConvergeNet will give Dell SAN technology, enabling Dell’s PowerVault storage products and systems to work with any Intel-or RISC-based server running UNIX, Solaris, Windows NT, Windows 2000, NetWare or Linux operating systems. Michael Lambert, senior vice president of Dell's enterprise systems group, said: "Our customers want storage technology from Dell that connects with any open-standards server. "The technology we acquire with ConvergeNet will help make that happen. "ConvergeNet's technology fits our strategy to deliver storage area network solutions that speed access to and backup of enterprise data; simplify the configuration, allocation and management of storage systems; and help ensure that data is available all the time." Upon completion of the deal, Dick Watts, president and CEO of ConvergeNet, will become VP and general manager of Dell’s storage systems division, reporting to Lambert. ®

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