June 1, 2009 – From an end-user perspective, the battle for the brains (switches and adapters) of next-generation converged networks probably won’t heat up until at least next year. But from the vendor side of the fight, the battle lines are being drawn today.
In a storage-myopic view (which I’m usually guilty of), this could appear to be a battle between storage stalwarts such as Emulex, QLogic, Brocade and Cisco. Obviously, these vendors have an advantage on the Fibre Channel side of the equation. But if Fibre Channel over Ethernet (FCoE) prevails, the converged network of the future will be just as much, or more, of an Ethernet play.
In addition to younger companies that specialize in 10Gbps Ethernet (10GbE) adapters and are fervently working on FCoE – such as Chelsio and Neterion – keep your eye on the leaders in the Ethernet (including 10GbE) adapter market – Intel and Broadcom.
Which brings me to the latest turn of the screw in the Broadcom-Emulex acquisition saga.
I’ve blogged previously about this hostile takeover bid. See
Broadcom makes hostile bid for Emulex
Emulex to Broadcom: “Take a hike”
Most recently, Broadcom took its offer beyond the Emulex board, straight to the shareholders. In response, Emulex sent a letter to its stockholders urging them not to tender their shares, and not to consent to Broadcom’s related solicitation, which aims to ultimately remove Emulex’s entire board of directors and appoint in its place nominees hand-picked by Broadcom.
Until this acquisition clears up, or a white knight rides in, it may be too early to handicap the players in the FCoE space. But who do you think will prevail? If you don’t want to respond below, shoot me an email at email@example.com.