Sun CEO discloses plan to merge storage, server units

Schwartz expects move to long-term growth for tape, archiving businesses

Sun Microsystems CEO and president Jonathan Schwartz claimed in his blog that the company will combine its storage and server product organisations into a new group called Sun Systems. The realignment comes about two years after Sun paid about US$4.1 billion to acquire tape vendor Storage Technology.

The new business unit will be responsible for aligning the company's server, storage, virtualisation and networking technology, Schwartz said.

Schwartz suggested that the decision to combine the units comes as IT executives struggle to manage increasingly integrated system, storage and networking systems.

The new unit will continue building and selling standalone storage systems, he said. "I'm expecting our Systems team to be just as focused on standalone storage and networking as they are on building great integrated systems," noted Schwartz.

A spokesman for Sun declined to elaborate on the reorganisation plan, except to say that executive vice president John Fowler will head the new unit. Jon Benson, senior vice-president of Storage at Sun, will report to Fowler, the spokesman said.

The moves comes about two months after a survey of 100 executives at Fortune 500 companies by Goldman Sachs Group, concluded that Sun's storage business is losing market share to rivals IBM, Network Appliance, Hitachi Data Systems, Dell and EMC.

Schwartz, however, contended that Sun's storage tape and archive sreplacing tape technology with disk-based and online storage/backup alternatives.

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