EMC said it plans to acquire Isilon Systems for $2.25 billion in a deal that will bring EMC's Atmos object storage together with Isilon's scale-out network attached storage (NAS). The two firms had been negotiating for several weeks.
Announced Monday, the boards of both companies have approved the $33.85-a-share deal. Isilon's stock jumped 29% on the announcement, but didn't rise above the offering price in an indication that investors believe the price was high enough to avert a bidding contest for Isilon.
The scale-out NAS market segment has been growing rapidly and market research analysts have predicted the segment will grow 36% annually to 2014.
"The unmistakable waves of cloud computing and 'Big Data' are upon us," said EMC chairman and CEO Joe Tucci. "Customers are looking for new ways to store, protect, secure, and add intelligence to the vast amounts of information they will accumulate over the next decade. EMC, in combination with Isilon, sits at the intersection of these trends."
EMC noted that Isilon with its easy-to-use and smooth scalability will be an excellent complement to its Atmos technology for customers in private or public cloud environments. EMC said the two companies' technologies combined are expected to reach a $1 billion run-rate during the second half of 2012.
"EMC will invest in all aspects of Isilon's business to accelerate growth and take advantage of the fast-growing market opportunity ahead," said Pat Gelsinger, president and COO of EMC information infrastructure products, in a statement.
The acquisition is the latest in a red-hot string of acquisitions in the rapidly growing storage field, fueled largely by the move to cloud computing. In August, HP and Dell competed for 3Par, which HP won for $2.35 billion. Qatalyst and its leading deal-maker, Frank Quattrone, represented 3Par in that deal and was reported to be representing Isilon in the EMC acquisition.
Isilon CEO Sujal Patel said the acquisition will enable Isilon products to benefit by leveraging EMC's market reach.
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