Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Dell, SonicWALL, and the end of the pure play

Remember when orange juice companies made orange juice, and consumer computer companies made computers?

I've talked ad nauseum about how Oracle has increased its stack so that it now offers everything from hardware to vertical enterprise applications. But Oracle isn't the only company that has ventured beyond its original business.

Eric Beehler alerted his Google+ circles to a TNW piece that references a Dell press release about its intent to acquire SonicWALL. I'm going to skip all the fake quotes and go right to the Special Note:

Special Note:

Statements that relate to future results and events are forward-looking statements based on Dell's current expectations. Actual results and events in future periods may differ materially from those expressed or implied by these forward-looking statements because of a number of risks, uncertainties and other factors. Risks, uncertainties and assumptions include the possibility that projected benefits may not materialize as expected; that the transaction may not be timely completed, if at all; that Dell is unable to successfully implement the plans, strategies and objectives of management for future operations, including the execution of integration strategies; and other risks that are described in Dell’s Securities and Exchange Commission reports. Dell undertakes no obligation to update these forward-looking statements.

That having been said, I'm not aware of any reason why this deal won't go through. There have certainly been enough of these types of deals that HAVE gone through.

Now I'll be the first to admit that these things go in cycles, but we're clearly in the cycle in which successful companies consist of a variety of products.

(DISCLOSURE: My employer is active in industries as diverse as automated fingerprint identification systems and aircraft engines, and my former employer was, at the time, involved in industries ranging from police radios to mobile phones to set-top boxes.)

How many companies are pure plays these days?

And when will Twitter be acquired by, or make an acquisition of, an orange juice maker?
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