IDC: IBM Number One Provider of Storage Services

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SOMERS, N.Y. - 15 Jun 2000: As storage becomes more critical to its customers and the choices pertaining to storage become more complex, IBM is beginning to market its storage services more proactively, especially in the SAN space."

The IDC Report, titled "Storage Services: An Analysis of Market Opportunities and the Competitive Landscape," identified SANs as a key driver in the storage services market, and also predicted storage consulting to grow at 32.6 percent annually between 1999-2003, compared with the overall market rate of 19 percent annual growth. The IDC report repeatedly cited IBM's new "SAN focus" which "...has created a new opportunity for providing consulting, implementation, and management services pertaining to storage and has raised the visibility of these services overall."

As IDC reported, IBM Global Services continues to enhance its storage skills and solutions by expanding its resources, education and training, methodology and tools, and offerings.

"IBM is the only company that can offer a complete array of services and technologies -- from applications, databases and middleware to consulting, implementation and management services to hardware like the Shark Enterprise Storage Server -- to build SANs and other storage solutions," said Roger Schwanhausser, Director for Storage and SAN Services, IBM Global Services.

IBM recently announced that 70 Business Partner SAN Solution Centers were opening as part of IBM's $400 million initiative to help customers harness the explosive growth of data. The centers offer SAN services that include testing, design, education and training. The centers also expand IBM's network of locally available SAN expertise and complement IBM SAN and storage testing facilities in the US, Germany, France and Japan. In December, IBM opened a SAN Interoperability Lab in Gaithersburg, Md., leveraging a $500 million investment in industry hardware and software already in place at IBM's National Testing Center, used by IBM Global Services to conduct performance testing of customer IT environments.

"IBM boasts broad product and service breadth and has the demonstrated capability to set industry standards. IBM's ability to gain market share is impressive, particularly in regard to its global services strength, services capabilities, and market momentum," the IDC report summarized.

The IDC Report, authored by analyst Doug Chandler, divides IBM's storage services into three primary areas: storage management, SAN-related services and traditional support services. According to the report, IBM has "several key competitive advantages in the storage services market," including a growing outsourcing business; a strong services reputation and expertise across a breadth of platforms; experience in managing multi-vendor IT infrastructures; and a strong position in e-business transformation and the migration of business applications to the Internet.

"IBM offers the full set of end to end services, not just around the "storage" infrastructure, but all the related pieces of the data chain that provide advantage in the marketplace," said Mr. Schwanhausser. "Application, database, middleware and, to be sure, the storage technologies that make it all possible in the first place. With an understanding of the fast expanding client requirement to transform their data infrastructures, IGS has embarked on a significant rampup of resources, education and training, methodology and tool development and delivery organization."

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