Data Domain has accepted NetApp's revised acquisition offer, leaving EMC still saying its bid for the storage vendor is the superior one though not increasing its offer.
NetApp early Wednesday morning upped the ante in what had become a bidding war with archrival EMC over Data Domain with a cash and stock offer of $1.9 billion.
NetApp's new bid for Data Domain came just two days after EMC's offer to acquire Data Domain for $30 per share in a deal worth about $1.8 billion.
That EMC offer was about 20 percent over the original $1.5 billion offered for Data Domain last month by NetApp.
Jay Kidd, chief marketing officer at NetApp, said that EMC's hostile tender offer for Data Domain is still in place, but that EMC in a statement released late Wednesday seems to indicate it would not increase its bid.
"EMC is still saying their $30 per share cash offer is better than our $30 per share offer," he said. "I interpret that as saying, we're not increasing our offer. Either that, or they're confused."
Kidd said that he expects the deal to close by late August or early September, at which time the company will be ready to discuss integration details.
He said there is some overlap in NetApp and Data Domain channel partners, with one estimate being that about 40 percent of Data Domain partners also carry NetApp.
"We got feedback from a lot of our channel partners that they are very excited," he said. "NetApp has a much more mature channel program because of our age, and we expect Data Domain partners to benefit from working with NetApp."
Data Domain is a pioneer in the development of data deduplication technology, and is by far the best-known vendor of the technology. The company manufactures a series of storage appliances that tightly integrates its dedupe technology with dedicated storage capacity. It also offers software for data replication and virtual tape libraries.
Deduplication, also called "dedupe," removes duplicate information as data is stored, backed up or archived. It can be done at the file level, where duplicate files are replaced with a marker pointing to one copy of the file, and/or at the subfile or byte level, where duplicate bytes of data are removed and replaced by pointers, resulting in a significant decrease in storage capacity requirements.
EMC on Wednesday issued a statement in which it said that its $30.00 per share remains superior to NetApp's part-stock counter offer for Data Domain made earlier in the day.
Joe Tucci, EMC Chairman, president, and CEO, said in a statement that EMC's all-cash tender offer remains superior to NetApp's offer, which is a mix of cash and stock, and that EMC is proceeding with its "superior cash tender offer."
Tucci went on to say that it does not expect Data Domain stockholders to approve the acquisition by NetApp. "EMC urges the Board of Directors of Data Domain to not take any actions that would further impede a transaction that is a superior alternative for Data Domain's shareholders," he said.
EMC's tender offer for all outstanding Data Domain common stock will expire on Monday, June 29, 2009, unless extended.
EMC declined to comment on Data Domain's acceptance of the NetApp deal other than via its statement.