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By acquiring Greenplum, EMC not only enters a new industry, but faces a new set of potential competitors, including Teradata, business intelligence appliance vendors like Netezza, and large vendors such as IBM and Oracle who sell hardware and software for business intelligence and data warehouse applications, both as pre-packaged systems and individual components. Another potential competitor is data warehouse technology provider SAP, which is in the process of acquiring Sybase.
While EMC plans to make Greenplum the foundation of a new data computing product division, the company has not discussed whether it will develop or acquire other technologies to fill out its offering.
The acquisition of Greenplum is not the first time EMC has branched out from its core storage and data management business. And, in most cases, the acquisitions have been of vendors who had leading positions in their respective markets and which subsequently made EMC the new market leader.
EMC got into the security business in 2006 with the $2.1 billion acquisition of the leading security vendor, RSA.
The company in 2003 also moved into enterprise content management with its $1.7 billion acquisition of Documentum, the leading vendor in that market.
EMC in 2004 acquired leading server virtualization vendor VMware for $625 million.
EMC did not respond to requests for more information.
Rick Whiting contributed to this article.