Hewlett-Packard Co. officially said on Monday it will no longer resell Hopkinton, Mass.-based EMC Corp.'s Symmetrix storage systems.
The move came a little over a month after HP, based here, introduced a competing array, the MC256, which it OEMs from Hitachi Data Systems.
No surprise here, said Dave Hill, senior analyst for storage and storage management at Aberdeen Group Inc., Boston. "It's a stamp of formal recognition of what everybody knew from the beginning. It's just the final details of the divorce," Hill said.
The decision to cancel the long-running reseller agreement was mutual, said Marilyn Edling, vice president and general manager of HP's Enterprise Storage Business Unit.
HP will continue to resell the Symmetrix until the end of the month, said Edling. "EMC has already started taking its [Symmetrix] deals direct to HP customers," she said.
Only the two companies' reseller agreement are canceled, Edling said. Other programs, such as HP's support of enterprise customers who purchased Symmetrix systems through the company, as well as warranties and service contracts, will not be affected, she said.
In addition, HP and EMC are expected to work together to ensure that Symmetrix systems remain certified for use in HP high-availability environments.
On May 5, HP, which until recently was EMC's largest customer, said it would start selling the MC256 storage array as part of a new enterprise storage strategy based around the company's Equation architecture.
HP's reseller contract with EMC allowed EMC to sell direct to HP's customers should HP offer a product which competes with EMC's Symmetrix arrays. EMC officials confirmed that such sales efforts started immediately after HP's MC256 release under a clause written into the contract.
The feud between the two computing giants will not affect EMC's bottom line initially, said Aberdeen's Hill. "EMC sells in the mainframe, IBM [Corp.], HP, and Sun [Microsystems Inc.] markets," he said. "It has a broad range of sales. I think you'll see a strong second quarter, and it will not show the affects of the situation. The real question will be how well EMC will show up in the third quarter. It depends on how HP's MC256 does, and EMC's response," Hill said.