EMC Goes Dantzing

The all-cash deal, worth nearly $50 million, gives EMC a new small-business backup and recovery software tool and a new group of solution providers, as well as leadership in the Apple Macintosh backup space.

Solution providers called the acquisition a smart move for EMC, which has shown a keen interest in small businesses with the introduction this year of its AX100 SAN arrays and NetWin 110 NAS appliances.

However, they warned, Dantz's software still needs work before it can be counted on for the Windows space.

The Dantz technology will enable EMC to pursue the Mac and OEM markets, said Eryck Bredy, president of Bredy Network Management, a Woburn, Mass., solution provider. "Dantz is the only game in town in the Mac-based backup market," he said.

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John Thome, vice president at Chi, a Cleveland-based solution provider, said that while Dantz is strong in the Macintosh space, applications such as EMC's Legato NetWorker can do much more.

"For Windows and Linux folks, [Dantz has] a small market share," Thome said. "With EMC acquiring it, this will put some oomph behind Dantz."

Dantz's presence in the Macintosh arena will help EMC branch out into verticals such as video production and prepress, he said.

George Symons, CTO of information management at EMC, said Dantz is a strategically important acquisition. "The SMB market is where the growth for backup and recovery is coming from, so it's important for EMC to get into this space," he said.

Dantz's Retrospect software complements EMC's AX100 and NetWin 110, Symons said. For midsize businesses, EMC offers the RepliStor and Co-Standby Server applications it acquired with Legato last year. The Dantz acquisition helps EMC go head-to-head with Veritas' NetBackup and Computer Associates International's ARCserve software, Symons said.

"Dantz has the ease of use and ease of installation lacking from Veritas and CA," he added. However, Chi's Thome said, "I think [Veritas and CA] are more worried about each other than about Dantz."