EMC boosts its offer for Data Domain to $US2.1 billion

After receiving an "all clear" from US regulators, EMC has increased its offer to acquire Data Domain.

EMC is willing to spend an extra $US200 million to acquire Data Domain, having upped its bid for the company to$US33.50 per share in cash.

The storage giant says it is willing to pay up fast and conclude the transaction in two weeks, several weeks faster than rival NetApp proposes. EMC also says its offer is more valuable than NetApp's mixed stock and cash offer.

In a press release announcing the new offer,  EMC CEO Joe Tucci said “The combination of EMC and Data Domain is strategically beneficial to both organizations and, when consummated, will deliver substantial and superior benefits to Data Domain stockholders as well as our respective customers, employees and partners.  Over the past several weeks we’ve received strong support from many Data Domain stockholders and customers, validating our belief that EMC is Data Domain’s best choice.  With regulatory requirements now fulfilled, and in light of the clearly superior proposal we submitted to Data Domain’s Board of Directors today, we expect Data Domain to sign our definitive agreement that will deliver superior value in cash to the Data Domain stockholders in as little as two weeks.

NetApp has responded, also in a press release, with CEO Dan Warmenhoven stating "In response to EMC's revised, unsolicited offer, the NetApp Board of Directors will carefully weigh its options, keeping in mind both its fiduciary duty to its stockholders and its disciplined acquisition strategy. We will provide an update shortly."

Twitter response to the bid has been mixed.

Analyst Steve Duplessie's tweet on the subject concluded "Yikes."

Storage expert and TechTarget contributor Steve Foskett says it would be "suicide" for NetApp to increase its bid.

The Storage Networking Industry Association of Australia and New Zealand (SNIA ANZ) issued a statement saying that the competition to acquire Data Domain reflects the value of deduplication.

“The determination to acquire Data Domain demonstrates the focus from vendors to acquire technologies that directly impact the customer’s bottom line," the Association said. "Data Deduplication can dramatically cut backup costs and delay further storage investments, so it’s easy to see why vendors will pay top dollar to acquire this technology.”

Disclaimer: Simon Sharwood is a non-executive board member of SNIA ANZ.

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