Cloudera Joins EMC Tech Connect Program In Move Praised As 'No-Brainer' For Partners

Big data management and analysis firm Cloudera has joined the EMC Technology Connect business partner program, which allows EMC customers to license Cloudera Enterprise through EMC and its reseller partners.

Arnold Bennett, North American director of sales for Northern, a Wakefield, Mass.-based EMC partner, said he's been eager for EMC to address not just data storage, but the immense amount of data being produced by enterprise customers.

A tight EMC/Cloudera partnership is a big step toward solving that problem, Bennett said. EMC and Cloudera introduced a joint solution integrating EMC's Isilon scale-out storage and Cloudera's Enterprise Data Hub last fall.

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Partners are challenged to offer customers meaningful solutions to their ever-expanding data when vendors' emphasis remains squarely on selling traditional storage hardware, Bennett said.

"The guys I talk to internally are very happy that the exec teams are starting to listen to the street," Bennett told CRN in an email. "The trick, however, is how they integrate the technology into the EMC process." In the past, competition for the network-attached-storage footprint led to competition between EMC's VNX and its Isilon big data shared storage products.

Hopkinton, Mass.-based EMC said the partnership is a response to the expanding role Hadoop is playing in complex data analysis. The EMC/Cloudera partnership gives customers Hadoop capabilities while allowing them to quickly implement data analysis and avoid replication of data across silos.

The Cloudera agreement gives EMC a "Cloudera-on-Isilon" solution, Sam Grocott, EMC senior vice president of marketing in EMC's emerging technologies division, said in a statement.

"Thousands of EMC Isilon customers already have a data lake. Now with the jointly certified Cloudera-on-Isilon solution, they have an engine to do even more complex data analysis," Grocott said. "With Cloudera's distribution for Hadoop, we're giving customers a reliable foundation for critical business processes that delivers a key foundational element of EMC"s big data strategy."

Customers have realized that Hadoop is more than just inexpensive storage, and have started using it as the foundation for business processing and realtime analytics throughout the enterprise, EMC said.

As a result, those customers are demanding more secure performance platforms that seamlessly integrate data from all aspects of the enterprise to deliver new insights, EMC said.

Andres Rodriguez, CEO of enterprise storage firm Nasuni, said bringing Cloudera into the Tech Connect program is a smart move on EMC's part.

"Customers are turning to EMC saying, 'We don't just want your storage. We want to plug right into sophisticated analytics tools,' and I think EMC is reacting well, and for partners, this is a no-brainer. It's a great move," Rodriguez said.

Rodriguez said it should be easy for EMC partners who have Isilon customers to sell Cloudera on top of it.

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"It's great for the channel, because you can very easily sell this on top of Isilon. It's very difficult to move massive amounts of data to the public cloud. It's much easier to move compute much closer to the data than it is to move the data anywhere."