Emulex, QLogic jockey for position

November 16, 2009 – The Dell’Oro Group market research firm recently released its Q3 2009 SAN Report, which includes market share figures for SAN product categories such as Fibre Channel HBAs and converged network adapters (CNAs) based on the Fibre Channel over Ethernet (FCoE) standard.

As they always do, Emulex and QLogic almost immediately released press releases claiming market share gains and/or leadership. Nice piece of PR one-upmanship. In each case, the companies just emphasize the slice of those markets that they happen to have good news about.

For example, Emulex reported that it is the leader in FCoE CNAs, according to the Dell’Oro report, with revenue growth of 160% over the previous quarter. The company also highlighted the fact that it gained 4% market share in the 8Gbps Fibre Channel HBA market.

QLogic reported that it’s the leader in the overall (4Gbps and 8Gbps) Fibre Channel HBA market, with a 54.4% share in Q3. The company boosted its lead over Emulex by 1.9%, for a lead margin of 17.9%. In addition, according to the press release:

“On the 8Gb Fibre Channel adapter front, QLogic increased its revenue share by 3.6 percentage points compared to the previous quarter, increasing its revenue share lead to 56.6 percent for Q3. In the category of 8Gb Fibre Channel mezzanine cards, QLogic continued to dominate with 78 percent of revenue share for Q3 compared to the nearest competitor's 22 percent share. In the broader category of all mezzanine adapters (4Gb and 8Gb), QLogic increased revenue share by 1.6 percentage points to 72.4 percent and held a 44.8 percentage point lead for the quarter.”

On the FCoE CNA front, these two rivals had better ramp revenues, shipments and market share, because in the first half of next year NIC giants Broadcom and Intel will put both feet in the FCoE market and this will no longer be a Storage Vendors Only skirmish.

An Industry Brief released by IT Brand Pulse notes that CNA port volume shipments increased 133% in Q3, to a total of 9,800 ports, and revenue increased 148% to about $4 million.

In a blog post on FCoE CNAs, IT Brand Pulse CEO and senior analyst Frank Berry says that, “We could see a quantum increase in CNA volume very quickly if Broadcom and Intel position their 10Gb CNAs to displace some or all of the 10Gb NICs they have been shipping for years and that are now ramping at over 50% per quarter.”

For more of Frank’s opinions on the CNA market, see “Radar Picks Up CNA Growth In Q3.”


posted by: Dave Simpson

Dave Simpson, Editor-in-Chief
by Dave Simpson

Dave Simpson has been the Editor-in-Chief of InfoStor since its inception in 1997. He previously held editorial positions at publications such as Datamation, Systems Integration, and Digital News and Review. He can be contacted at dsimpson@quinstreet.com

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