Why NetApp Is Banking on Growth in the All-Flash Array Market



NetApp is optimistic about all-flash array offerings

Storage company NetApp (NTAP) has stated that flash plays a key role in customers’ IT transformations. Customers want to realize performance and economic benefits by replacing hard disk installations with flash. In January 2017, NetApp launched the All Flash FAS (or AFF) A700 array, which helps customers reduce their data center footprint as well as cooling costs.

In fiscal 3Q17, NetApp’s all-flash array business rose 160% YoY (year-over-year) with an annualized revenue run rate of $1.4 billion. NetApp’s CEO, George Kurian, stated, “Flash is the mainstream choice for new on-premises deployments as customers seek to lower total cost of ownership while gaining greater speed and responsiveness from key business applications.”

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All-flash array outpaces enterprise storage growth significantly in Europe

Although external storage systems revenue fell 5.1% YoY (year-over-year) in Europe, the Middle East, and Africa to $1.5 billion in 3Q16, the flash market saw revenue growth of 76.4% YoY. Hybrid flash array revenue also rose 3.5% YoY in 3Q16.

Once dominated by storage startups, flash technology has grabbed the attention of traditional enterprise storage vendors like EMC, NetApp, IBM (IBM), and Cisco Systems (CSCO). However, the all-flash market is consolidated with the top six players accounting for over 75% of total revenue.

NetApp is the second-largest all-flash array player in terms of revenue and continues to outpace industry growth. Storage firm Seagate (STX) also stated that it will launch converged storage platforms including hybrid and all-flash array offerings this year.


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