Fujitsu Dips Into EMEA for $300 Million

by Clint Boulton

The computing giant will resell blade systems from Egenera throughout Europe, the Middle East, and Africa.

Fujitsu Siemens Computers is buying into blade server pioneer Egenera's approach to utility computing to the tune of $300 million during the next three years.

In an exclusive OEM deal aimed at improving its corporate computing offerings in Europe, Middle East, and Africa (EMEA), Fujitsu Siemens Computers will resell Egenera's BladeFrame hardware and software into its Primergy server portfolio.

Beyond gaining a virtual lock in EMEA for blade servers, Fujitsu said in a statement the co-branded Primergy BladeFrame will be a key contributor to the company's Dynamic Data Center (DDC) and Triole strategies. These models call for the virtualization and pooling of server, networking and storage resources.

Egenera makes "stateless" blade servers, meaning they consist of a processor and memory but no disks. The BladeFrame's Processing Area Network (PAN) software allocates and repurposes servers to applications as needed without manual intervention.

This is an integral characteristic of a utility computing schema, where computing tasks may be provisioned on-the-fly. Such computing scenarios often involve farms or grids of blade servers housed in larger racks, which is where blade manufacturers see value.

The combination of the Egenera blades, along with its DDC hardware specs and Triole software, is Fujitsu's stab at on-demand computing. Fujitsu hopes to use its portfolio to gain more market share at the expense of server rivals IBM, HP, Sun Microsystems and Dell.

There's little question Fujitsu has now done that in terms of offering blades in EMEA; they are a lucrative niche all over the world.

According to the most recent server figures from IDC, the market for modular blade servers reaped $440 million for the second quarter. IBM remained the top blade seller, with 41 percent market share. HP was second at 38.6 percent.

Meanwhile, Egenera gains immediate presence overseas in EMEA, said Susan Davis, vice president of products for Egenera.

"We had a small sales office in the U.K. and in Germany, and over the past year we've started to make some inroads," Davis said in an interview. "But there is no question that overnight this gives us the kind of presence and brand and customer access that we never could have achieved organically."

Egenera, which plans to close the year at over $100 million in sales, counts America Online, Credit Suisse First Boston and Goldman Sachs among its customers.

To illustrate Egenera's growth, Davis said the company had a couple dozen customers by the end of 2003 but now has over 100.

This article was originally published on internetnews.com.

This article was originally published on Thursday Sep 15th 2005
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