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3PARdata is Ready

3PARdata Inc. has taken its next big step towards the virtual storage market by announcing the hire of two key executives (see 3PARdata Appoints New Execs).

The move is yet another indication that 3PARdata may be pulling ahead of other so-called next-generation storage networking startups who are seeking a slice of the market now owned by EMC Corp. (NYSE: EMC).

3PARdata and its would-be competitors are developing storage virtualization equipment (see Virtual Reality?). These platforms combine features of SAN and NAS devices, providing hardware and software that allows multiple storage arrays (often those from different vendors) to be managed as single entities. This brings higher capacity to customers while cutting costs, experts say.

3PARdata is moving aggressively to gain traction in this still-nascent sector (see Top Ten Private Storage Networking Companies, page 7). In July, the company scored $100 million from a small army of investors (see 3PARdata Snags $100M), including Oracle Corp. (Nasdaq: ORCL), Sun Microsystems Inc. (Nasdaq: SUNW), and Veritas Software Corp. (Nasdaq: VRTS).

3PARdata won't quantify the size of the stake that these three particular investors have made, but one spokesperson says it's "considerable." And analysts have stated that having the backing of the leading database vendor, the leading storage software vendor, and a key equipment supplier could be key to the startup's ongoing success.

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