IBM signs OEM deal with Juniper; to partner Brocade Communications for FCoE switches

ibmBuilding on its current tie-up with Juniper Networks Inc, International Business Machines Corp (IBM) Wednesday announced having signed an OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer) deal with Juniper.

The new agreement - which reflects the companies' common goal of furthering the economics of networking via reduction in costs, improved services and better risk management - would allow IBM to rebrand and resell Juniper's Ethernet networking products and support, including switches and routers, as a part of the IBM data center range of products.

While Juniper executives see the deal as a means of expanding the company's distribution, IBM opines that it would help corporate data centers, which handle increasingly high-volume network traffic, with a more extensive array of server, data storage, and networking equipment.

Jim Comfort - IBM's enterprise initiatives' VP - said the deal would cater to the customers' needs in the direction of seamlessly extending their private data center clouds. While analysts see the new IBM-Juniper deal as IBM's retaliatory action against other equipment vendor Cisco, which has encroached into its server space, IBM said that it was also working on enhancing its ties with Cisco.

Talking about another of its imminent partnerships - that with Brocade Communications Systems Inc - for reselling fiber channel over ethernet (FCoE) switches, Comfort said: "It's our recognition of the need in the data center for a much more integrated and automated environment."