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EMC-Dell strategic partnership has ‘cooled off,’ says EMC’s Tucci

Dave Raffo, Senior News Director | 10.19.10 |

EMC Corp. CEO Joe Tucci today said he doesn’t expect Hewlett-Packard (HP) Co.’s $2.35 billion acquisition of 3PAR to change the competitive balance much, but admitted that Dell’s courtship of 3PAR had a negative effect on the EMC-Dell strategic partnership.

HP outbid Dell to acquire storage systems vendor 3PAR Inc. last month. Dell sells EMC Clariion SAN, Celerra NAS and Data Domain backup systems, but would have become more of a competitor to EMC than a partner if it won the battle for 3PAR. On EMC’s quarterly earnings conference call today, Tucci said he’s not sure if the EMC-Dell partnership can be repaired.

“We took a setback as Dell went after 3PAR and cooled things off [with EMC],” Tucci said. “We are in discussions to see if we can do something more meaningful and lasting. The key is, it’s got to be meaningful and it’s got to be lasting to say it’s back on track.”

EMC usually gives details of sales of its products through Dell on its quarterly earnings calls, but declined to do so today. When asked about sales of the midrange Clariion system, Tucci said sales were strong last quarter despite more competition from Dell’s EqualLogic iSCSI platform. “Obviously, Clariion was affected by Dell moving on to EqualLogic,” he said.

As for HP-3PAR, Tucci said he doesn’t think it “changes the landscape at all. 3PAR is 10 years old and we’ve been competing with it for quite a while.”

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