The analyst firm said that it is uncertain of the business benefits and synergies EMC will gain from its $2.1bn purchase of RSA, and suggests that the RSA brand may be the most important asset EMC gains from this deal.
"At first glance, these two companies seem like a strange fit," a newly published Gartner analysis noted.
The report speculated that EMC sees the acquisition as a means to get a storage security offering on the market faster than if it were to build one itself or create one through a partnership.
"In Gartner's view, EMC has not yet demonstrated a strong understanding of what's needed in the encryption market, and could therefore struggle to be successful in exploiting this purchase," Gartner stated.
"Furthermore, while the RSA brand is strongly associated with encryption, the company offers very few out-of-the-box encryption products, preferring a focus on toolkits and encryption/certificate management."
However, the analyst firm observed that RSA does offer assets other than encryption. These include one-time password tokens (which generate the bulk of its revenue), an enterprise single-sign-on product, web access management and federation products, and online consumer security products such as those acquired from Cyota and PassMark.
But all of these fit oddly with storage, according to the Gartner study. " Despite EMC's efforts to articulate the place of RSA's token business within its storage security vision, we see no synergy here," said the analyst.
The report goes onto warn that EMC "could easily stifle RSA's venture into the online consumer security space" which has been RSA's growth engine since mid-2005.
Gartner believes that the continued success of RSA's non-encryption products depends on how much autonomy EMC gives the acquired company in its new capacity as EMC's Information Security Division.
"It is important that EMC sustains the RSA brand, which has considerable depth. In the end, the RSA name may wind up being the most valuable asset EMC will acquire here," Gartner concluded.
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