Feeds

Who could the big storage beasts be looking to buy?

Five companies hunt for acquisitions

Securing Web Applications Made Simple and Scalable

NetApp

Having opened the door to a non-FAS integration acquisition with the attempt to buy Data Domain, then NetApp might look at Compellent, 3PAR, Copan, and Riverbed. The latter would be outside its storage speciality but NetApp's channel could certainly shift a good few Riverbed boxes and Riverbed's channel could take NetApp products into places where they don't exist yet.

There are opportunities for integrating NetApp storage with Riverbed appliances and it looks to be a Data Domain class purchase with less overlap to NetApp's existing product range. If EMC doesn't want Riverbed then NetApp could have a clear run, assuming also that neither Dell nor HP are interested. For HP, adding in Riverbed to the ProCurve operation could look quite interesting. EMC must surely be thinking Riverbed looks both tasty and complementary to its existing products, if it wants to dip a toe into WAN acceleration waters.

NetApp might also cast an eye over 3PAR. Culturally there would seem to be a goodish fit and both companies compete with EMC. However, 3PAR's pure high-end block storage products would overlap a little with NetApp's FAS 6000s, and would also overlap with any coming new flagship NetApp product, making it not very complementary.

Compellent would overlap the bulk of NetApp's unified storage products and so also not provide a complementary product sale opportunity. Ditto Pillar Data.

Were NetApp convinced it needed a distinctly green offering for persistent or reference data, it could look at Copan. The firm is currently headless, having lost its CEO, Mark Ward, and the venture capital backers might be looking for an exit. It would give NetApp the greenest disk storage technology of all and it could be positioned as complementing NetApp's own products in the archival storage space.

Our ranking of these four possibilities is Riverbed first, followed by Copan, 3PAR, Compellent and Pillar Data.

Other acquisition candidates

Other possible storage acquisitions in general might include STEC for its SSD controller technology, Data Direct for its high-bandwidth block storage arrays used in movie special effects rendering type applications, and BlueArc for hardware-accelerated high-speed file servers.

We note that EMC does not have a scale-out NAS storage offering in the Isilon class and, if it thought such storage had a place in enterprise data centres, might have a look at Isilon. EMC could think that Drobo might find a home in its Iomega unit. HP might be looking at Nirvanix for enterprise cloud storage having dropped its SME Upline cloud backup offering.

We have no inside information or tips about any of the companies we have listed as possible acquisition candidates. None of them have said they are for sale or want to be bought, so we'll just have to wait and see whether any of our guesses hit the mark, or are way, way off. ®

The Essential Guide to IT Transformation

More from The Register

next story
EU's top data cops to meet Google, Microsoft et al over 'right to be forgotten'
Plan to hammer out 'coherent' guidelines. Good luck chaps!
Manic malware Mayhem spreads through Linux, FreeBSD web servers
And how Google could cripple infection rate in a second
FLAPE – the next BIG THING in storage
Find cold data with flash, transmit it from tape
Seagate chances ARM with NAS boxes for the SOHO crowd
There's an Atom-powered offering, too
Intel teaches Oracle how to become the latest and greatest Xeon Whisperer
E7-8895 v2 chips are best of the bunch, and with firmware-unlocked speed control
Gartner: To the right, to the right – biz sync firms who've won in a box to the right...
Magic quadrant: Top marks for, er, completeness of vision, EMC
prev story

Whitepapers

Top three mobile application threats
Prevent sensitive data leakage over insecure channels or stolen mobile devices.
The Essential Guide to IT Transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIO's automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise.
Mobile application security vulnerability report
The alarming realities regarding the sheer number of applications vulnerable to attack, and the most common and easily addressable vulnerability errors.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
Consolidation: the foundation for IT and business transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.