'Many server vendors have not focused on developing storage solutions until now'

DQC Bureau
New Update

US-based Steve Faris has over 12 years of experience in the IT industry. A computer engineering graduate from the University of Michigan, he also has a master's degree in Computer Science from the University of California. As VP Marketing in Asia Pacific for EMC Corporation, Steve has the responsibility of leading the company's channel program management, field product marketing, marketing communications, sales productivity and training teams in Australia, New Zealand, South Asia and Greater China. He informs DQCI about the company's storage networking strategy.


What exactly is EMC into? Who should go in for solutions from EMC and why?

EMC Corporation is the world leader in information storage systems, providing information infrastructure for a connected world. Our success is a result of our ability to focus on helping customers build their business around information regardless of the operating system, platform, network or application. Any company that has mission critical information needs our solutions.

What is EMC's storage networking strategy?


EMC’s storage networking strategy provides storage capabilities -- including NAS and SAN -- in the manner that is best for our customers. Sometimes this means implementing a NAS-only or SAN-only architecture. Other times it means implementing both NAS and SAN concurrently, while leveraging a common storage pool and management framework. EMC is unique in its ability to support independent or merged NAS and SAN environments, and provides choice and flexibility to customers today and into the future.

In converged environments, EMC has a highly sophisticated software product called HighRoad, which enables information to move seamlessly between a SAN and NAS. It can intelligently decide the best route to take for that particular piece of data, which might be a text file, a large CAD/CAM file or video streaming.

This ensures that optimal performance of the infrastructure is maintained by delivering the information in the most efficient way.


This is a unique capability of EMC that enables the convergence of SAN and NAS to just networked storage.

In what way are SAN and NAS different?

NAS and SAN are simply acronyms for methods of attaching storage (where information lives) and servers (where applications live). The word ’network’ is in both NAS and SAN definitions. 


This means the way to connect lots of storage and lots of servers is to take advantage of network technology as the connection path. NAS uses IP networks, SAN uses channels (such as fiber channel or Gigabit Ethernet).

In short, NAS is for file sharing and distributed applications like Internet, web mail, digital asset management and CAD/CAM.

SAN is for dedicated storage, databases and client server applications like transactional systems and ERP applications.


How does EMC look at India as a market for SAN/NAS solutions in comparison to other world markets?

India is no different from other countries. There are many successful companies in India, which have sophisticated IT requirements. 

The acknowledgment that storage is a separate infrastructure from servers is increasing amongst the Indian IT community. This will allow more companies to build their business around information and understand the need to invest in best-of-breed information infrastructure.


How big is the SAN/NAS market in India? In the future where do you think will India be placed in this area?

Based on IDC's June 2000 report on the forecast of the Indian Storage market, it is estimated that India’s external storage market will grow at a compound annual growth rate in excess of 43 percent from 1999 to 2004. The total external storage market by revenue is estimated in excess of $240 million in 2004. 

What is EMC's ranking both worldwide and in India? And who are your competitors?


Globally, EMC is the market leader in external storage systems with 32.7 percent market share, according to Gartner Dataquest's August 2001 report. 

In a recent IDC Asia Pacific report, EMC also dominated the market at 25.3 percent of the external storage market. IDC does not provide specific market breakdown by country. 

EMC is also the market leader for storage management software. The Gartner Dataquest April 2001 report announced EMC jumped six points in this segment to 25.5 percent, and leads with a significant gap over the No 2 player. 

EMC’s competitors are generally server vendors that also sell storage. As a result, they try to sell end-to-end solutions. While in the past, that might have worked in their favor, moving forward, as information grows at a high pace, they need more sophisticated storage infrastructures to manage. 

To EMC’s advantage, many of the server vendors have not focused on developing storage solutions until now. As such we have a two to three year technology lead and have invested more than $2 bn in interoperability testing. This is not something any company can achieve overnight. 

Do you have any major plans for the Indian operations?

Our Indian operations started in August 2000. We now have a team of 18 people across our offices in Bangalore, Delhi and


We have been in the education phase over the past year educating our customers on the need for the right kind of storage solutions. We continue to target segments of the market where EMC solutions make a significant impact. These include telecommunications, Internet data centers, financial services, manufacturing companies that have significant investment in supply chain management and software development companies. 

What role does the channel play in the SAN/NAS business?

EMC’s overall business strategy is to broaden its reach, penetrate new markets and gain market share in the region. EMC has appointed about 50 channel partners throughout Asia Pacific and continues its search for partners with strengths that complement EMC’s existing sales force.

India is a completely channel driven market and all our business is routed through partners. In India we have tied up with Wipro, HCL and Tech Pacific as our preferred partners.

EMC’s channel partners are instrumental to the company’s success in the small and medium-sized enterprise market, which constitute a sizeable portion of the Indian marketplace. Under this initiative, partners will have access to a full range of EMC sales, service engineering and marketing resources. 

EMC in India is investing heavily in providing training to its partners, which is designed to ensure that they receive full access to the world-class training programs for information storage operators, builders, architects and instructors. 

How much has EMC grown revenue-wise in the last three years?

Globally, in the last three years, EMC has grown consistently between 25—35 percent. In Asia Pacific, EMC has had triple-digit revenue growth year on year, in 2000. 

Of course, in the region, we are starting from a lower base as EMC began investing in Asia Pacific in mid 1999. We are confident that Asia Pacific will continue to outpace growth of the rest of EMC.