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Sun deal could make IBM unbeatable in Unix server market

Mar 21, 2009, 20:03 (2 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Patrick Thibodeau)

"An acquisition of Sun would give IBM nearly two-thirds of the worldwide Unix server market, according to research firm IDC. IBM sold $6.4 billion worth of Unix servers last year, for a 37.2% market share, while Sun's sales amounted to $4.8 billion, for a 28.1% share, IDC said. Trailing behind in third place was Hewlett-Packard Co., with $4.6 billion in sales and a 26.5% market share; after HP, the rest of the vendors counted by IDC had single-digit shares at best.

"Unix systems, which IDC said accounted for 36% of overall server market revenue in last year's fourth quarter, continue to see their share of data center processing be eroded by Windows and Linux servers. But many businesses and government agencies still rely on Unix machines to run some of their most critical applications and databases.

"IBM owns the mainframe market, and the prospect of it gaining a substantial piece of the Unix business - and in particular, the high end of that market - via an acquisition of Sun is worrisome to Ed Black, president and CEO of the Computer & Communications Industry Association in Washington."

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