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HP To Acquire PolyServe

Hewlett-Packard on Monday said it plans to acquire PolyServe, a maker of storage software for clustering NAS appliances and consolidating Windows and Linux servers and storage into scalable utilities.

Terms of the deal, expected to close in 60 days, weren't disclosed. HP has had an OEM relationship with PolyServe for a couple years, reselling the PolyServe software as the HP EFS Clustered Gateway with its EVA and other storage solutions, said Donovan Nickel, vice president for NAS in HP's StorageWorks division.

PolyServe's software links multiple NAS appliances based on the Windows Storage Server or Linux operating systems into a storage cluster.

Nickel said the PolyServe software fits well with HP's business in industry-standard servers, blade servers and combination block and file SAN services based on HP's EVA and other storage platforms.

However, he noted, the biggest impact will be on bringing HP's NAS business to a new level in order to better compete with EMC at the high-end and Network Appliance in the midrange.

"HP is No. 3 in NAS," Nickel said. "There's a lot of growth in the NAS market, and we don't have a lot of market share."

Michael Stankey, president, chairman and CEO of PolyServe, said his company has 30 channel partners, including Avnet, which also sells to its own solution providers. HP's acquisition of PolyServe shouldn't have a big impact on most of them, he said.

"Most of our channel partners are HP resellers, at least two-thirds of them. So it's not a big impact," Stankey said. "Given HP's dominance in industry-standard servers, it's natural that HP is the biggest part of our business."

PolyServe also has smaller OEM deals with other vendors, which HP refused to identify. Nickel said it has yet to be determined how those relationships will change with HP's acquisition of PolyServe. "But I don't anticipate any moves to move away from relationships to get to market," he said.

Stankey said he intends to stay with PolyServe long enough to assist with the transition and then leave the company. He said he has no specific plans at this time.

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