CommVault Packs Up OEM Deals

Backup software vendor snags OEM deal with StorageTek; licenses Sistina file system software

August 5, 2003

3 Min Read
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Storage software vendor CommVault Systems Inc. has landed the first OEM deal for its data recovery software with Storage Technology Corp. (StorageTek) (NYSE: STK) -- a partnership that promises to be a major new channel for CommVault.

The Oceanport, N.J.-based company announced today that StorageTek has signed on to distribute and jointly develop a StorageTek-branded version of the CommVault QiNetix Quick Recovery software for Windows and Unix environments (see StorageTek, CommVault Ink OEM Deal). By combining the new software version with StorageTek's own data protection solutions, like snapshot capabilities, the two companies claim they will be able to virtually eliminate backup windows while providing rapid recovery.

"This allows [StorageTek's] customers to schedule, track, and create policies around snapshots in an enterprise configuration," says Dave West, CommVault's VP of business development, claiming that StorageTek evaluated its and other companies' technologies for more than nine months. "For us, it's a real validation of our architecture... No one else has a management framework that sits on top of other vendors' snapshots and ties them directly into the application."

"It's a very important deal," notes Pat Martin, StorageTek's president and CEO. "CommVault has terrific technology... This will position both us and them very strongly in the marketplace."

While StorageTek is no stranger to OEM deals, CommVault had only signed two OEM agreements to date -- one with Legato Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: LGTO) and one with Advanced Digital Information Corp. (Nasdaq: ADIC) -- and neither of those OEM deals is still in effect. Last month, EMC Corp. (NYSE: EMC) said it would acquire Legato in a $1.3 billion deal (see EMC Gobbles Legato).Industry observers say that the StorageTek deal should definitely give the company a boost.

"Certainly from a publicity standpoint, this gives them a bit more visibility," says Anders Lofgren, an analyst with Giga Information Group Inc.

One natural question to ask is whether the deal brings CommVault any closer to its coveted IPO. Nearly a year and a half ago, the company revealed that it intended to take its chances on the public market (see CommVault Aims for IPO). While the company wouldn't say when it plans to resuscitate those plans, Lofgren says the deal could provide the company with the additional revenue streams it needs to make such a move. "That would be important for them if they want to go public," he says, but cautions that not enough is known about the deal to really assess its significance.

CommVault says it expects to deliver the product to StorageTek by the end of this year, and that StorageTek would be able to start shipping the software to customers in the first quarter of 2004.

Separately today, CommVault said that it will license Sistina Software Inc.'s file services and volume management software, which it plans to integrate into its QiNetix data management products (see CommVault OEMs From Sistina). The two companies, which are also planning to provide integrated support and services, boast that the partnership marks the first integration file and block-level storage software with enterprise-level data protection software for Linux."This is a major announcement for Linux," says Joaquin Ruiz, VP of marketing and product management at Sistina. "Always, as a precursor to any large rollout of an operating system, you generally see a very tightly integrated data services layer."

CommVault and Sistina plan to roll Sistina's Global File System (GFS) and Logical Volume Manager (LVM) software into QiNetix products by September and start shipping the integrated products by the end of the year.

"CommVault is committed to having a leadership position in the Linux clustered market," West says. "We think a relationship with Sistina will give us a competitive edge."

Eugénie Larson, Senior Editor, Byte and Switch

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