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EMC ups offer in bidding war with NetApp for Data Domain

Warwick Ashford

EMC has increased its offer to acquire storage firm Data Domain by 16% to $2.1bn in an attempt to outbid rival bidder NetApp.

The bidding war between the two rival storage companies escalated after Data Domain rejected EMC's initial counter-offer of $1.8m and NetApp matched it.

Both rivals are aiming to acquire Data Domain's technology which saves disk space by removing duplicate pieces of data before organisations make back-ups.

The EMC cash offer of $33.50 a share aims to trump NetApp's revised $30 a share stock and cash proposal. NetApp upped its price from its original offer of $25 a share.

"EMC's proposal offers greater certainty of value to Data Domain stockholders," Joe Tucci, EMC chief executive said in letter to the Data Domain board.

He said the combination of the two companies is strategically beneficial to both and will deliver benefits to customers and all other stakeholders.

EMC has also indicated it is willing to close the transaction a month sooner than NetApp and dropped all deal protection provisions to win shareholder approval.

The Data Domain board told shareholders it would prefer to be acquired by NetApp, which is also based in California's Silicon Valley unlike Massachusetts-based EMC.

But analysts say it unlikely that NetApp will increase its offer a second time and many are predicting a victory for the comparatively cash rich EMC.

Tucci said in a statement that EMC expects Data Domain to accept its proposal in "as little as two weeks".


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