Is Dell eyeing Quest Software following its Wyse acquisition?

Dell may acquire Quest Software to expand its desktop virtualisation offerings and gain Quest’s customers. Experts wonder if there is too much product overlap for such a deal to make sense.

Dell officially completed the Wyse Technology acquisition today and may already be in talks to buy another desktop virtualisation-related vendor, Quest Software, according to reports.

The Wyse Technology Inc. acquisition gives Dell a line of thin client products that compete against rival Hewlett Packard and expands the company’s Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI) offerings.

Quest Software, Inc. could help Dell expand its desktop virtualisation portfolio even further and Dell would gain access to Quest’s 100,000 customers worldwide, experts said.

"If reports of Dell buying Quest are true, it may be a smart move for Dell to help further its penetration of the enterprise market and increase its offering of enterprise virtualisation, management, and VDI tools,” said David Davis, a virtualisation expert and video trainer at TrainSignal.

The Dell-Quest acquisition report  comes two months after Quest entered into an agreement with investment firm Insight Venture Partners to go private in transaction valued at $2bn (£1.28bn).

Quest Software also revealed this month that it had received offers from several bidders including Microsoft Corp., Oracle Corp., BMC Software Inc. and CA Inc.

Dell vies to be 'everything to everyone'?
In addition to Quest’s infrastructure management software, the company also sells data backup and disaster recovery products including the popular Quest vRanger software.

There is some overlap between Quest’s software and Dell’s existing products, so some experts wonder where Quest’s products would fit in.

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For example, Dell’s virtualisation backup product portfolio already includes the storage virtualisation software for backup and disaster recovery that Dell recently bought from Appassure, Davis said.

Additionally, Quest recently bought VKernel, and with Quest Dell would have both vFoglight and VKernel's tools, he said.

This could also be more of an acquisition of Quest customers, its sales teams, and intellectual property (IP) rather than a move to build Dell’s tools portfolio, Davis added.

“But it appears that Dell is selling about every IT tool and turning into an everything to everyone company,” he said.

Another expert, Shane Kleinert, a solutions architect agreed. “…Seems like [Dell is] buying the whole stack... they going for virtual desktop management company next my guess,” he said on Twitter.

Dell, Wyse and Quest?
Dell’s commitment to the VDI space is clearer now that the company officially owns Wyse. Experts wonder whether Quest could offer much more.

“Dell will try to say we are the only end to end VDI solution provider and will start taking advantage of Wyse’s technology to build thin clients specific to vWorkspace, said Elias Khnaser, a technology officer at Sigma Solutions Inc., a data centre provider in Texas.

“But with vWorkspace having so little penetration, I am not sure that will work,” he said. “So short term, I don’t think it will affect Wyse, but long term I have my doubts…”

Both Dell and Quest Software declined to comment.

Quest’s shares were up 3.5% at the opening today in the wake of the acquisition news.

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