Feeds

Is Quantum shopping itself around?

Saucy firm undoes top button, eyes NetApp provocatively?

Maximizing your infrastructure through virtualization

Comment Quantum's full year and fourth quarter results came in pretty much as expected, but they do position the storage company for interesting possibilities and Motley Fool picked up on one of those; a NetApp acquisition of Quantum.

The fourth quarter fiscal 2011 Quantum results showed revenues of $165m, up marginally on the year-ago quarter's $164.5m, with a net loss of $2m, much improved on the year-ago's $4m net loss.

The full year results revealed a much better pattern; revenues of $672m, down one per cent on fiscal 2010, and net income of $5m, down substantially on the prior year's $17m. Still Quantum has made a profit for two years running; it's paid off a lot of debt ($100m in fiscal 2011) and grown its branded revenue as the OEM tape business continues its apparent death march.

DXi revenues were up 43 per cent year-on-year, although high-end DXi 8500 revenues stalled, general branded (vs OEM) revenue was up five per cent, StorNext was up 28 per cent, and branded tape automation down two per cent. StorNext revenues only grew 14 per cent in the fourth quarter. This is slow going, although the NetApp reselling deal might accelerate things.

What next?

The question now becomes for Quantum - what next? Gacek said in the earnings call: "Our strategy, our opportunity and goals aren't dramatically different in fiscal 2012. However, I believe we are much better positioned to execute on a growth plan as we start the new year than any time since the Quantum-ADIC merger."

It's reshaping its sales force organisation and resources to better sell high-end dedupe boxes - a problem area in 2011 - and will recruit partners "who want to have an alternative to EMC Data Domain for dedupe and for Oracle on tape or want to sell StorNext for large data requirements like video." StorNext deals tend to be high-end as well, and Quantum knows it has to get better on executing on these large and longer time-scale deals.

The tape area will see product improvements: "This year, we will release significant hardware and software features for our Scalar i6000 Enterprise Library focused on large data, archive requirements, high availability and security." The second generation DXi software, the better-performing DXi 2.0, will ship on the DXi 6700 and 8500 boxes in the summer.

Also: "We will be offering source-based deduplication and a multi-protocol version of the DXi6700 with a broader range of capacity for increased scalability. We also expect to make further innovations in our DXi line during this fiscal year, including new capabilities for managing and protecting data in virtualised environments."

StorNext gets development too. "We will launch the initial members in a family of StorNext appliances that will be targeted at specific customer use cases … These new StorNext appliances will be tightly integrated with the StorNext software with optimised server and storage hardware."

This is the plan for fiscal 2012, with Gacek being surprisingly forthcoming about wanting to establish Quantum's near-term product development credentials. But how is the company going to grow once the dedupe business becomes, as it will, mature?

StorNext does not at this stage look like a huge revenue driver or product rain-maker, being more of a steady niche-seller, although Gacek said:"we expect there to be a lot of growth in StorNext as we look forward [beyond 2012]. Even so, what does Quantum do; where does it go?

Top three mobile application threats

More from The Register

next story
BBC goes offline in MASSIVE COCKUP: Stephen Fry partly muzzled
Auntie tight-lipped as major outage rolls on
iPad? More like iFAD: We reveal why Apple fell into IBM's arms
But never fear fanbois, you're still lapping up iPhones, Macs
Nadella: Apps must run on ALL WINDOWS – PCs, slabs and mobes
Phone egg, meet desktop chicken - your mother
White? Male? You work in tech? Let us guess ... Twitter? We KNEW it!
Grim diversity numbers dumped alongside Facebook earnings
Microsoft: We're making ONE TRUE WINDOWS to rule us all
Enterprise, Windows still power firm's shaky money-maker
HP, Microsoft prove it again: Big Business doesn't create jobs
SMEs get lip service - what they need is dinner at the Club
ITC: Seagate and LSI can infringe Realtek patents because Realtek isn't in the US
Land of the (get off scot) free, when it's a foreign owner
Dude, you're getting a Dell – with BITCOIN: IT giant slurps cryptocash
1. Buy PC with Bitcoin. 2. Mine more coins. 3. Goto step 1
There's NOTHING on TV in Europe – American video DOMINATES
Even France's mega subsidies don't stop US content onslaught
prev story

Whitepapers

Top three mobile application threats
Prevent sensitive data leakage over insecure channels or stolen mobile devices.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Application security programs and practises
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
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.