This morning the news hit the wire — EMC and Data Domain are now one company. It’ll take a few days to cross all the ts and dot all the is but the deal is done.
I didn’t have much to say about the acquisition during the “battle” for the company, because I don’t know much about the business side of the products involved. What I find fascinating is the people side of this. When Data General was acquired a decade back, we in the CLARiiON division had mixed emotions. We were frustrated at being acquired by someone we viewed as a competitor, but were excited knowing our products would have a new channel into the market. We figured EMC’s acquisition of us meant we were right about how important the market was we had been targeting for years.
Data Domain isn’t in that same kind of position. I assume their fears revolve around what EMC will mean to their culture, their history of innovation, the things that got them where they are. Their hopes are probably the same, though — entry into new markets, the EMC brand standing behind your product. Good stuff. Hopefully their fears will be somewhat allayed by the announcement that their CEO Frank Slootman will be heading up an entirely new division which more products will eventually join. I would like to think this means EMC not only values how Data Domain got to where they are, we want to see that “special sauce” applied to other products in the future.
I’m looking forward to seeing an influx of new faces and ideas inside our corporation. What’s exciting about EMC these days is that even though Data Domain will be a separate division, the cultural mingling can begin immediately, as soon as employees “meet up” on our internal web sites. People talk all the time about the social web as a force multiplier — this is a textbook case.