Consolidation continues in RAID, tape markets

Posted on June 01, 1998

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Consolidation continues in RAID, tape markets

Zachary Shess

Looking to expand its scope within the storage market, Ampex Corp. recently announced its intention to acquire RAID and thin-server vendor MicroNet Technology in a stock swap. The announcement represents the first development from a directive made in January by Ampex CEO Edward Bramson, who said the company would look for strategic acquisitions to help increase its technology base and to boost sagging revenues. First quarter sales in 1998 fell more than 20% from the same period in 1997.

While the acquisition is still contingent on various conditions, including completing due diligence and other formalities, the proposed union is being touted by Ampex officials as a synergistic move. Ampex already has a position in the tape storage market with its high-end DST product line; the acquisition of Micronet would give the company a presence in the disk-array arena.

More specifically, Ampex would become a storage supplier to the commercial pre-press market.

No significant personnel increases or layoffs are anticipated, and if circumstances proceed as planned, the acquisition may be completed by the end of the month, according to Ampex spokesperson Karen Schweikher.

The spring quarter also saw the acquisition of Borg Adaptive Technology by nStor, as the RAID vendor looks to differentiate itself from competitors. Borg develops RAID management software.

Borg`s Adaptive RAID software algorithms are designed to simplify RAID administration and setup and to help increase disk-array performance by making adaptations based on changes in I/O workload patterns. Officials at nStor also plan to form a new engineering facility in Boulder, CO, where Borg is based. The acquisition was completed for $350,000 in cash, the retirement of $325,000 in debt, and a warrant to purchase $400,000 in nStor stock at $1.38 per share.

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