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NetApp, a well know storage company (the pioneer in file based storage offer), has announced a definitive agreement to acquire SolidFire for $870 million in cash. SolidFire maybe need more presentation: founded in 2010, has interesting  all-flash storage systems built for the next-generation data center where simple scaling, set-and-forget management, assured performance and multi-tenancy, and cloud economic models are driving new market growth.

With SolidFire, NetApp will now have all-flash offerings that address each of the three largest All-Flash Array market segments. For the traditional enterprise infrastructure buyer, the award-winning NetApp All Flash FAS (AFF) product line delivers enterprise-grade features across flash, disk and cloud resources. For the application owner, the NetApp EF Series product line offers world-class SPC-1 benchmarks with consistent low-latency performance and proven 6×9’s reliability. For the next-generation infrastructure buyer, SolidFire’s distributed, self-healing, webscale architecture delivers seamless scalability, white box economics, and radically simple management.

After the Dell – EMC deal is another huge consolidation in the storage vendor space… For NetApp was probably a needed move: before this, they haven’t a real AFA (All Flash Array) solution and proposition and now they can compete at all level with other big vendor but also with the few AFA vendor (like PureStorage, for example).

Probably they will try to repeat the smart move of 5 years ago, where they purchase the Engenio external storage systems business of LSI Corporation in an all-cash transaction for $480 million. In this case the business was though the OEM storage (like Dell PowerVault MD or some IBM DS models), now the move is to build a strong portolio with specific solutions.