Briefs: June 27, 2005


Once the effort is complete, EMC and Sun customers will be able to manage, protect and share information using EMC storage systems and software on severs using either SPARC or Advanced Micro Devices' Opteron processors that utilize Solaris 10.

"As Sun delivers Solaris 10 across multiple platforms, EMC will be a key enabler for our joint customers to deploy it as part of an information life-cycle management strategy," said EMC Vice President Howard Elias.

Jonathan Schwartz, Sun president and COO, said the agreement with EMC will allow Solaris 10 customers the choice of using data management and storage technologies from either company.

Oracle on Friday tapped former Microsoft executive Gregory Maffei to be its new CFO and one of its presidents.

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Maffei joins Safra Catz and Charles Phillips in the role of president, and the company said he will be responsible for its legal department, human resources, manufacturing and distribution, and global real estate.

He will take over as CFO next month, replacing Catz, who was filling the position on an interim basis after Harry You resigned in March to become CEO of BearingPoint.

Maffei comes to Oracle from broadband company 360networks, where he served as chairman and CEO.

Before that, he was CFO of Microsoft from July 1997 to January 2000. He left Microsoft six months after the company announced the Securities and Exchange Commission was investigating its accounting practices. Microsoft settled with the SEC in 2002, promising to refrain from using improper procedures. Maffei also served as chairman of Microsoft's travel Web site Expedia from 1999 until February 2002.

Enterasys Networks filed a lawsuit against two networking rivals, Extreme Networks and Foundry Networks, for allegedly infringing on several of its patents.

In a complaint filed with the U.S. District Court for the District of Massachusetts last week, Enterasys alleges that Extreme and Foundry both are infringing on six Enterasys patents relating to virtual local area networking, multiprotocol routing and several other networking technologies, according to a statement from Enterasys.

Enterasys holds more than 640 issued or pending patents worldwide. The company did not specify the amount of damages it is seeking.

The suit comes approximately two weeks after Enterasys revealed plans to close its Rochester, N.H., facility. The closure comes as part of a cost-cutting plan unveiled in April that includes the layoff of 300 employees, or 30 percent of its staff, by the end of next quarter. Rochester was the former home base of Cabletron, Enterasys' parent company. Enterasys was spun off from Cabletron and began operating as an independent public company in 2001.

Ingram Micro signed a deal to carry AOpen barebones notebooks, motherboards and white-box components, according to the companies.

Ingram Micro joins D&H Distributing, Synnex and Tech Data as distributors of AOpen products in the United States.

"We are constantly looking to bring as many choices to our customers as possible," said Mike Beyersdoerfer, manager of component products at Ingram Micro. "Like any two companies looking at their distribution strategy and reach, we felt we could help each other."

Ingram Micro also will carry imaging products, multimedia/display cards, keyboards, mice, optical storage devices, monitors and components, but its focus on AOpen will be on the barebones whitebook chassis, Beyersdoerfer said.

"We didn't have a real whitebook offering. We have the processors, the drives, the optics, but we didn't have the chassis. Now we can offer a complete whitebook solution to our customers," he said.

Nortel Networks this week is launching Velocity Incentives, a new component of its Partner Advantage channel program that adds increased rewards for partners focusing on convergence technologies.

"We know we need to provide incentives to partners to adopt these solutions as quickly as possible," said Perry McDonald, director of channel marketing at Nortel. Available to the vendor's North American partners, Velocity Incentives includes marketing funds that are weighted toward sales of voice, data and applications while benefits tied to sales of traditional phone equipment are decreased. Partners also can earn extra rebates for not only meeting overall year-over-year growth goals but also growth in voice, data or applications.

In addition, the vendor's new Data Select program gives partners whose Nortel sales comprise more than half of their overall networking business an additional 5-point up-front discount on networking products. The new incentives aim to help spur adoption of VoIP and bolster partners' margins, McDonald said.

Netspoke, a provider of integrated Web and audio conferencing services, this week plans to unveil a master agent agreement with Telecom Brokerage. The pact marks the third major master agent alliance that Netspoke has inked in the past year as part of an effort to triple its base of agents from the current level of 2,500, said Netspoke channel chief Traci Rigano. Netspoke has existing master agent agreements with MicroCorp and IPx Connect, a unit of TAG National.

Electronic Data Systems, which outsources computer services to businesses, said it now plans to sell its A.T. Kearney unit to an outside party.

Previously, EDS was considering spinning off the high-end consulting business, purchased for about $600 million a decade ago, to its partners under a management buyout. However, an EDS spokesman said the firm has decided to discontinue those discussions.

The company expects to reach an agreement on the sale of the money-losing A.T. Kearney business by the end of the third quarter.

Last year, A.T. Kearney posted revenue of $806 million—accounting for about 4 percent of the $20.6 billion in total revenue generated by EDS—and reported an operating loss of $10 million.