SanDisk To Acquire Fusion-io, Become Enterprise Flash Storage Provider


Flash storage technology developer SanDisk is planning to acquire Fusion-io, a move that will give SanDisk a strong flash-based PCIe hardware and software portfolio and will help speed up the continuing consolidation in the flash storage industry.

Milpitas, Calif.-based SanDisk will pay about $1.1 billion, after accounting, for Salt Lake City-based Fusion-io's cash on hand, in an all-cash transaction that values Fusion-io at $11.25 per share, or about 13 percent from its Friday close of $9.29 a share.

With the acquisition, SanDisk solidifies its position as a major consolidator in the flash storage market. In particular, SanDisk gets access to both Fusion-io's ioControl hybrid flash and disk array and its ION Accelerator all-flash appliance for application acceleration.

[Related: SanDisk, Diablo Intro ULLtraDIMM Flash Storage, Claims Performance Better Than PCIe]

One of SanDisk's primary goals has been to grow its high-value solutions, especially those related to high-end enterprise applications, said Sanjay Mehrotra, SanDisk president and CEO, during a Monday conference call announcing the acquisition.

"This acquisition is an important step in the evolution of SanDisk into an enterprise storage solutions provider," Mehrotra said. "With the addition of Fusion-io's PCIe hardware and software solutions, SanDisk will have the broadest flash solution portfolio in the industry."

Acquisitions have been a big part of growing SanDisk's enterprise business.

SanDisk in 2013 acquired Smart Storage Systems, a developer of enterprise-class SATA and SAS SSDs.

The company in 2012 acquired Schooner Information Technology, a developer of enterprise applications that provide availability and caching features for database applications. It was a follow-up to SanDisk's acquisition earlier that year of FlashSoft, a developer of software for adding SSD caching capabilities to software applications.

SanDisk, which was founded as a Flash memory technology developer, started its enterprise journey with its May 2011 acquisition of SSD maker Pliant Technology.

Once its acquisition of Fusion-io closes later this year, SanDisk will get a number of Fusion-io PCIe and flash storage technologies.

Fusion-io in 2013 acquired NexGen, a developer of hybrid storage appliances based on Fusion ioMemory for small to midsize enterprises. NexGen's software, combined with ioMemory and standard disk drives, turns industry-leading x86 server platforms into hybrid disk and flash storage systems.

Fusion-io in 2011 acquired IO Turbine, a developer of caching solutions for virtualized environments, for about $95 million. IO Turbine developed software that takes advantage of SSD and Flash storage on servers to increase the performance of primary storage in virtualized server environments.

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