EMC's nose was put out of joint by Dell's efforts to acquire 3Par and both firms are again exploring new ways to revive their flagging partnership, according to senior management.
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Following a protracted battle during the summer, HP last month emerged victorious in the auction to buy utility storage player 3Par but the mere fact Dell was involved in the acquisition attempt upset EMC.
In a Q3 conference call with analysts yesterday, EMC executive president David Goulden said: "As far as the Dell relationship [is concerned] obviously we took a setback as Dell went after 3Par and obviously cooled things off."
"We are again in discussions to see if we can do something more meaningful and lasting," he said, adding both firms were still keen to work together.
At the time, Joe Tucci, CEO at the storage vendor, admitted EMC and Dell were winding down the reseller side of the agreement and would pick up the slack via its direct sales force and through channel partners, limiting the deal to OEM sales.
However, the product range has never really recovered from the fall out with Dell, as EMC's head honcho conceded yesterday, "I didn't mention CLARiiON as a star but it's holding it's own."
"CLARiiON is obviously affected by Dell moving onto EqualLogic so CLARiiON had a lot to overcome," he said, adding the line-up would continue to "plod along and do okay".
The wider results saw EMC grow Q3 sales 20% on the year ago period to $4.2bn (£2.6bn) and profits rise 35% to $639m (£403m).