Storage, Document Management Unite

Optical Laser, a Huntington Beach, Calif.-based specialty distributor of storage and document management products, this week will unveil an agreement under which it will resell EMC's Centera family of storage arrays to its solution provider customers.

Also on Monday, Legato Software, which was acquired by EMC earlier this year, signed an agreement under which IBM will resell its EmailXtender e-mail management software, EmailXaminer e-mail scanning software and DiskXtender storage management application via its direct- and indirect-sales channels.

Optical Laser's Extended Family Tree

>> 1996: Optical Laser adds OTG, Smart Storage to its line card.
>> 2001: OTG acquires Smart Storage; former Smart Storage execs found Seven Ten Storage Software.
>> 2002: Legato acquires OTG; Optical Laser becomes a Legato distributor.>> 2003: Optical Laser adds EMC, Seven Ten Storage Software to its line card.

Meanwhile, NewWave Technologies, a Gaithersburg, Md.-based content management specialty distributor, recently signed an agreement with StoneFly Networks, a San Diego-based developer of IP-based storage provisioning appliances.

Optical Laser is the first distributor for EMC Centera arrays, which are aimed at applications with data files that must be stored for years due to regulatory or compliance issues.

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EMC also resells Centeras via ISVs that have developed document management applications with APIs specifically for the arrays.

Optical Laser plans to help EMC recruit and authorize a select group of document and e-mail management solution providers, bring them together with ISVs and help them engineer specific customer solutions, said Arsenio Batoy, president of the distributor.

Optical Laser also will provide application-specific presales and post-sales professional services to solution providers with Centera opportunities, Batoy said. "This is unique to us compared to other distributors in that our professional services are hooked on the application more than on the SAN side," he said.

Neil Medwed, president of Preferred Computer Systems, a Richardson, Texas-based solution provider, has already signed on with Optical Laser to work with the Centera.

Preferred Computer, which has seen its Optical Laser relationship bloom recently, brought in e-mail storage specialists to start tackling the pain financial institutions face in managing e-mail compliance issues, Medwed said.

"Optical Laser helped us engineer different solutions," Medwed said.

"They helped us with proposals and marketing and invested the time to help us succeed."