EMC Leads Storage Software Market, but IBM Gains Ground

The storage giant's grip is beginning to slip a bit as IBM, NetApp and CA record impressive worldwide storage software sales numbers.

EMC continues to enjoy a substantial lead in both market share and total revenue in the worldwide storage software market, but third-place IBM is increasing its year-over-year revenue growth at a surprising rate, according to a quarterly report released Sept. 11 by IDC.

EMC, based in Hopkinton, Mass., owned 26 percent of the world storage software market with revenues of $654 million in Q2 2006, IDC reported, but it has lost ground from a year ago, when it had 30 percent.

On the other hand, IBM, of Armonk, N.Y., has gained 2.5 percentage points from a year ago and improved its revenues by a noteworthy 35 percent year-over-year in claiming 12.5 percent of the market with $311 million in sales.

Symantec, of Cupertino, Calif., is the clear No. 2 in the category with $468 million in sales in Q2, good for 19 percent of the market.

Fourth place Network Appliance showed by far the most improvement in its year-over-year revenue number, jumping a whopping 57 percent to $222 million from $141 million in 2005.

NetApp owns 9 percent of the overall market, up from 6 percent a year ago.

Overall, the worldwide storage software market continues to spiral up, growing 8.6 percent year-over-year to $2.5 billion in the second quarter of 2006, according to IT research firm IDC.

It was the 11th consecutive quarter of year-over-year growth, the Framingham, Mass. company noted.

"With customers buying and installing record amounts of storage hardware capacity, the need for storage software has never been greater," said Rhoda Phillips, research manager for IDC storage software.

IDC publishes the quarterly results as part of its Worldwide Quarterly Storage Software Tracker service.

"Among the larger sub-segments, the storage replication market has shown consistently strong growth over the past several quarters and is expected to continue growing for the next several years."

IBM Tivoli Storage and Security Vice President Hershel Harris said that IBMs standards-based approach to storage software is paying off.

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"Companies are increasingly looking to storage software to manage data growth and improve the overall health and performance of their IT infrastructures," Harris said.

"Our standards-based solutions provide customers with flexibility to improve utilization and application availability among multivendor systems."

In the second quarter, the storage replication segment demonstrated 13.2 percent year-over-year growth. In addition, the smaller but fast-growing archive and HSM (hierarchical storage management) market posted 32.0 percent year-over-year growth.

"Buyers are particularly interested in replication software to help ensure that their disaster recovery and business continuity plans are viable when planning for recovery from any unwelcome and unpredictable events that might occur," Phillips said.

HP and CA (29.5 percent revenue growth) rounded out the top five in a statistical tie with 5.7 percent and 5.6 percent revenue share, respectively.

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Chris Preimesberger

Chris J. Preimesberger

Chris J. Preimesberger is Editor-in-Chief of eWEEK and responsible for all the publication's coverage. In his 13 years and more than 4,000 articles at eWEEK, he has distinguished himself in reporting...