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SANchips Becomes Imperative

The startup formerly known as SANchips has resurfaced as Imperative Networks with plans to ship a low-end multiprotocol switch next quarter (see SANchips and SANchips Switches Gears).

Heres a quick review: Israeli-based SANchips first surfaced early last year to pitch a switch-on-a-chip that would reduce cost and time-to-market for Fibre Channel switches. The idea was to sell the chip to switch companies, or those looking to become switch companies. But there were no takers, and when we last caught up with CEO Avi Shillo in September, he'd changed course and was preparing a move over to the SMB market.

Imperative has followed that path, and Shillo says it will ship a switch with iSCSI and Fibre Channel capability in hopes of cashing in on an anticipated boom for IP SANs on the low end.

"When we were looking to make deals with switch companies I realized there were not that many Fibre Channel switch vendors,” Shillo says. “So we thought, ‘Why don’t we become one?’ ”

One reason there aren’t many Fibre Channel switch guys out there is because it’s a tough market to crack, especially since Cisco Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: CSCO) elbowed its way in over the last few years. Cisco, Brocade Communications Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: BRCD), and McData Corp. (Nasdaq: MCDTA) already have multiprotocol switches out (see Brocade Ships Multiprotocol Router, McData Extends Router Family, and Cisco Readies Multiprotocol Switch).

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