Symantec's takeover of Veritas could transform the firm into a "disruptive influence" in the global software market, but risks failure if it does not manage to integrate both companies' product lines.
Technology analyst company The 451 Group believes that failure to complete this integration could make the deal a liability.
"Symantec's desire to expand beyond its antivirus footprint, which is largely a consumer play, and become a more strategic enterprise IT vendor is not new," said Simon Robinson, sector head for storage and systems at The 451 Group.
"However, given Veritas' wide range of capabilities and established footprint with larger enterprises, the combined company is sending a strong message to other software infrastructure players that it intends to be a disruptive force in enterprise IT."
Robinson added that the deal has potential competitive ramifications for several vendors, including Computer Associates, EMC, IBM and other major enterprise IT firms.
The analyst firm observed that the two parties position the deal as an offensive move, but believes that attack is often the best form of defence.
"This could be viewed as a pre-emptive strike on Veritas' and Symantec's common enemy - Microsoft - which is increasingly throwing its substantial shadow over the security and storage markets," said Robinson.
"It is a bold and surprising move by Symantec that will raise plenty of eyebrows in the industry. The deal potentially addresses two key issues in enterprise IT today: information security and availability.
"But software mergers are inherently risky, and Veritas' recent patchy performance in its core markets, including storage software, could weigh down Symantec's recent stellar growth."
The analyst believes that the competitive environment for storage virtualisation technologies will undergo a "significant realignment" over the coming 18 months. Cisco, IBM and Veritas are the current market leaders in virtualisation.
Robinson suggested that that EMC could emerge as a key leader over this period, with Veritas potentially losing share, and that McData and Network Appliance will become primary players in the storage virtualisation market.
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