EMC, NetApp compete to buy Data Domain

Data storage giant EMC is attempting to thwart rival NetApp's bid to acquire Data Domain by making a bigger offer.

Larry Dignan

This was originally posted on ZDNet's Between the Lines.

EMC swooped in Monday with a $1.8 billion, or $30 a share, offer for Data Domain.

The rub: rival NetApp already had a plan to buy the Santa Clara, Calif.-based company for $1.5 billion, or $25 a share.

EMC said its all-cash offer is a 20 percent premium over NetApp's stock-and-cash offer on May 20.

Simply put, EMC wants to acquire Data Domain in order to thwart NetApp's offer--or at the very least make the acquisition more expensive. Joe Tucci, EMC's chief executive, said his company's offer is a "superior proposal" and a "win-win."

He added that the acquisition will strengthen EMC's position in the "next-generation disk-based backup and archive market."

Data Domain offers "deduplication storage appliances for disk-based backup, archiving, and network-based disaster recovery," according to its profile on Yahoo Finance.

On a conference call, Tucci said the Data Domain offer is about driving growth. "We had our eye on Data Domain, but obviously someone got there first," he said. He added that the growth profile of the combined companies makes the higher price worth it and that the combination of three products--EMC's DL4000 and Avamar and Data Domain--will be a $1 billion business.

Certainly, Data Domain shareholders were happy about the EMC offer: