Data Storage: NetApp at 20: 'Nice Little File Server Company' Grows Into $6B Storage Giant
NetApp has come a long way from being known as a "nice little file server company" years ago, in the words of its Chairman and former longtime CEO Dan Warmenhoven. Since its birth 20 years ago, it has blossomed into one of the world's most successful independent data storage companies. NetApp is now the second-largest independent network-attached storage (NAS) maker/seller in the world behind EMC, and is No. 3 only to EMC and IBM in external disk storage, according to industry researcher IDC. NetApp's data storage products have won the respect of midrange and small and midsize business generally; larger enterprises are also buying NetApp's wares for various applications. NetApp has been instrumental in shaping how the storage industry looks today. This year, the company's 20th in business, marks a major milestone for NetApp. What began in 1992 as an idea sketched on a placemat has grown into a "model company," ranked as a top global place to work, with more than $6.2B in revenue and more than 11,500 employees. Here are some highlights of those 20 years.