EMC Corp scouts for acquisition targets

Global information infrastructure specialist looks for niche acquisitions targets

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By  Roger Field in Istanbul Published  April 2, 2009

EMC Corp is actively looking to acquire niche technology companies to complement its offering, according to senior management at the company’s sixth annual Telecom Summit for Middle East, North-West Africa and Turkey.

Chuck Hollis, EMC’s global marketing CTO, said the state of the global economy, combined with the company’s cash rich position, provided an ideal opportunity to make acquisitions.

“One of the upsides about a down economy is if you have cash, it’s a hell of an opportunity and we are in a very strong cash position and we are out there looking,” Hollis told CommsMEA.

Hollis added that while EMC already had “all the big pillars in place”, there was still room to buy niche companies or technologies that could give it an edge in particular parts of the ICT sector.

“We are very comfortable with the foundations of our house but there is always room to put more furniture in the house and fix up little corners, whether it is services companies or small niche technologies,” he said.

Hollis added that many smaller technology companies lacked the finance to make their products a success, and could benefit from being part of a bigger organisation.

“IT is becoming more important not less important and innovation is out there everywhere. There are so many companies that add a little piece of the solution, but it is like a little seed and unless it is put together in a bigger construct it will never see the light of day.

“It is not just a US phenomenon, we see across the globe bright companies from India, the Middle East and Russia, and there they are, just by themselves with nowhere to go, and that’s where most of the acquisitions come from.”

EMC would also be ready to move quickly should the right acquisition target arise, Hollis said, pointing to the speed with which it acquired server software maker VMWare back in 2004.

“It is a question of being educated and then when the time is ripe for the deal, you’ve got to be there. So many deals get lost due to analysis paralysis. I think that is the difference between our acquisition strategy and that of some of our rivals,” Hollis said. “We are always ready to go and when the timing is right we have the confidence to move.”

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