News Analysis

HDS to acquire Archivas for up to $120M

Jo Maitland, News Director
Hitachi Data Systems (HDS) is expected to announce Tuesday that it intends to acquire Waltham, Mass-based Archivas Inc. for approximately $120 million, or four times the amount that Archivas received in funding, according to sources close to both companies. HDS said that it will hold a conference call about the deal tomorrow morning.

HDS has been reselling the Archivas Cluster (ArC) software on top of its storage systems since Feb. 2006, to compete against EMC Corp's Centera product, HP's Reference Information Storage System (RISS), Network Appliance Inc's Nearstore and IBM's DR550. NEC Corporation of America also resell's ArC with its line of modular storage arrays. It is unclear what will happen to this reseller arrangement once HDS purchases the startup.

ArC is an object-based storage respository for fixed content that runs in a cluster across standard servers. It stores and retrieves files and metadata as objects rather than files. Users write policies for retention, authentication, data shredding, and protection to meet compliance standards, based on the metadata.

Unlike its competition, ArC is a software only product that supports NFS, CIFS, and HTTP natively, and stores files in standard formats such as XML and HTML, making it a more open environment for users. The key differentiator here is that it is not dependent on hardware and can therefore scale more easily, a crucial factor for a system supporting archival data.

Several hospitals and research companies are using the product as is NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Md. Goddard is using the software to store atmospheric data retrieved from satellites.

Archivas' investors included North Bridge Venture Partners, Polaris Venture Partners and Solstice Capital.


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