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CRN Exclusive: NetApp's Dave Hitz Talks Software-Defined Storage, Outlines How Challenging It Would Be To Acquire The 'New NetApp'

The co-founder and executive vice president tells CRN that NetApp's unique position in managing data across on-premises and public and private cloud environments would make it hard to acquire the company without destroying its value.

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So, can NetApp survive as an independent company?

To me, a different interesting question is, could NetApp maintain the value it has if someone big bought us? In other words, the thing we're becoming, could that survive an acquisition?

You asked the opposite question: Could we survive being independent?

I think we have a very viable independent business. I think the way the world is evolving, data is so important, and focusing like Cisco did for so many year on networking, having a real, clear focus can be very useful to your customer base and to your relationship with partners. We have to prove it. But I don't see any inherent reason in the market why we can't. I think our competitors got bought up for different reasons. The teeny ones because the big old guys wanted to stay in the game and they weren't successful innovating. Dell EMC is more complicated.

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