Cisco: Ask EMC to Marry You Already!

Cisco has unveiled their latest Unified Communications/Cloud Computing move by strengthening their relationship with VMware to develop new products and forming a new Joint Venture, Arcadia, with EMC, VMware, and Intel. In-other-words, Cisco is on a giant group date.

 Cisco has been dating EMC for many years as they resell EMC’s storage gear. In fact, Cisco purchased EMC some nice lake front property when they invested, and bet, heavily on VMware. Yesterday, Cisco and EMC decided to move-in-together by forming Arcadia. Meanwhile, Intel has decided to play chaperone for a while and make sure these two giants play nice.

Let’s face it; for Cisco to match/defend against rival HP’s one-stop-shop strategy they need to unravel the delicate cooperation/competition agreements with the likes of HP, IBM, and more. While HP has a formidable portfolio of hardware and software, Dell and IBM have beefed up agreements with the likes of Brocade and Juniper. Juniper may be in the enviable position of being courted by multiple companies but eventually they’ll have to tie-the-knot.

 The combination of Cisco and EMC would send shockwaves across the IT industry. Cisco would gain instant access and credibility to the storage, virtualization, and management worlds. However, the aftershocks would be just as powerful as HP, Dell, and IBM would surely take forceful and definitive actions.

What would you pay to be a fly-in-the-wall of a conference room with Chambers and Tucci? Or, better yet, to be in Ellison’s office when he read the news of the merger? Clearly, Oracle is becoming a wild card within the IT industry and they could really mess things up by acquiring BMC, Brocade, or even Juniper.

While JV’s, partnerships, and investments are cute, it’s time for a more serious relationship. Cisco needs to take advantage of this moment, pull out that ring in the safe, get down one knee, and ask EMC for its hand in marriage. In that moment the world would be holding its breath…yes or no.

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