Security

12 tech giants that might not survive 2009

Channel Insider published its list of "Tech vendors that won't be here in 2010" based on a survey of the channel partners that make up its audience. There are some surprising names on the list -- some of them are a little far fetched. Take a look.

Channel Insider has published its list of "Tech vendors that won't be here in 2010" based on a survey of the channel partners that make up its audience. There are some surprising names on the list, and some of them are a little far fetched.

In its online slideshow, Channel Insider wrote, "We asked solution providers which vendors they thought would go out of business or be acquired in 2009. The results may shock you. Based on their perceptions and predictions, the following are the vendors that made the going list of those that won't be here in 2010."

1. Novell 2. NetApp 3. Check Point 4. McAfee 5. Salesforce.com 6. (tie) Juniper Networks 6. (tie) CA 6. (tie) AMD 7. Sun Microsystems 8. Citrix Systems 9. Symantec 10. VMware

Here are my thoughts:

  • I'm surprised Nortel wasn't on the list
  • Novell is definitely in trouble, but who would want to buy them? Same goes for Sun Microsystems. Maybe those two should merge. If either were to be acquired, the price would be cheap and I think IBM might be the only taker.
  • AMD's struggles continue but it isn't going away.  However, a hook up with VIA might make sesne.
  • Having the top two anitvirus makers, Symantec and McAfee, on this list tells us where that market is heading.
  • Citrix and VMware are both having problems, but their products have a bright future so they could both be very attractive targets.
  • NetApp and Salesforce.com should not be on this list.

About

Jason Hiner is Editor in Chief of TechRepublic and Long Form Editor of ZDNet. He writes about the people, products, and ideas changing how we live and work in the 21st century. He's co-author of the book, Follow the Geeks.

84 comments
paul.terrell80
paul.terrell80

Malwarwbytes is a great scanner for pc, if you want to pay for licensing on a domain though, would have to go with nod32 w00t!

NickNielsen
NickNielsen

What I found more interesting than the channel partners' predictions were Channel Insider's more pragmatic comments. 1. Novell   ? 25% of partners predicting   ? CI predicts a sale or merger would not be a shock, but going out of business is unlikely 2. Netapp   ? 21% of partners predicting   ? CI predicts highly unlikely 3. Check Point   ? 20% of partners predicting   ? CI predicts not likely to sell out anytime soon. 4. McAfee   ? 19.6% of partners predicting   ? CI predicts plausible 5. Saleforce.com   ? 19% of partners predicting   ? CI predicts don't expect anything dramatic 6. Juniper Networks   ? 18% of partners predicting   ? CI predicts unlikely 6. CA   ? 18% of partners predicting   ? CI predicts don't bet on it 6. AMD   ? 18% of partners predicting   ? CI predicts unlikely the market will give up the alternative chip supplier 7. Sun Microsystems   ? 16% of partners predicting   ? CI predicts a sale is possible, but expensive 8. Citrix   ? 13% of partners predicting   ? CI predicts a rough road ahead, but no sale 9. Symantec   ? 12% of partners predicting   ? CI predicts not for sale 10. Vmware   ? 11% of partners predicting   ? CI predicts highly unlikely Of course, everybody knows the only truly accurate seer is Cassandra. edit: formatting

The 'G-Man.'
The 'G-Man.'

Bus SAS is dead, your own site said so this morning.

jnoble
jnoble

This list actually reminds me of posting to newsgroups 10 years ago... We would call it a cross-posting troll... I can't see 90% of that even coming close to being true.

nash_rambler
nash_rambler

FYI, Salesforce.com is on the list because it's an attractive acquisition target, not because they're failing to execute effectively. The difference is important, because I'm actually more inclined to buy stock in the company based on this information rather than sell it.

bens
bens

Anyone else think that hard to believe? They appear to me to be holding a vast majority of market share in their niche. I don't foresee virtualization falling out in 09.

LarryD4
LarryD4

AMD and VIA??? Oh gosh no! I shutter at the thought..

iravgupta
iravgupta

McAfee has been churning out trash consumer-side products for more than 3 years. In the age where security apps are becoming nimble and proactive, McAfee is not innovating enough to stay in the market. Symantec on the other hand has completely changed its game with 2009 range of products. I think the Symantec CEO should be writing "Who says elephants cant dance - 2". Moreover with MS announcing the availability of a free complete Antimalware tool, the need to innovate and stay relevant grows exponentially.

JamesRL
JamesRL

Nortel is certainly struggling with cash flow and not selling well. The news in Canada is full of reports that bankruptcy is imminent. If they can sell off a division they may avoid that. Certainly they would be a good takeover target AMD is doing ok in the video card market, they managed to wrestle away fastest card spot away from nVidia for the first time in years. They are behind Intel in the CPU market, but making up ground. James

Forum Surfer
Forum Surfer

I've never priced them. It will soon be time for me to renew Symantec Endpoint Enterprise again. I think I'll price those guys and see how they compare. I've seen the home version in action and I was impressed...even if I was removing a trojan off of the machine in question. I won't hold the infection against it as it was the couple's child that downloaded tons of free music. Kids running as administrator can infect anything! Do you have any experience with nod32 enterprise? Just curious to see if it's central management features are on par with the others.

Oz_Media
Oz_Media

But I don't think staff and editors on TR are actually trolls though. They are hired to provide such articles, not just kids looking to stir the pot.

henry.hahn
henry.hahn

The SUN has been setting for years.

jasonhiner
jasonhiner

VMware's future is uncertain. Microsoft and Xen are both closing the software gap and are offering products at lower prices. Once Microsoft builds virtualization into the OS (Hyper-V) then that will be a stiff test of whether VMware will remain the market leader in this category.

C-3PO
C-3PO

From what I've seen of VMware, they are building their own wedge into the OS world... somewhere between Google and Microsoft there is the need for something to connect to hardware - that's virtualization and VMware is the only one who does this well on an enterprise level. Disappearing? No way, I think they will increase market share over this year... be bought out? I'm not sure anyone can afford them in these economic times...

blotto5
blotto5

via and amd might be a good combination like when amd aquired ati(not similiar cuz its cpu n gpu) but still the point is the smaller companies band together to try to take on intel whos making a killing on intel atom netbooks. via might allow amd to concentrate on the powerful processors and via will handle the smaller ones like theyre doing now. so i ask why wouldnt u like to see them together?

esvandal
esvandal

I hope you meant shudder?

JamesRL
JamesRL

But virtually every company that goes bankrupt does file for chapter 11. Some companies manage to avoid bankruptcy by calling chapter 11 and re-organizing, making deals with suppliers, or being purchased. Thats what Nortel will be hoping for, but in this climate I'm not optimistic. James

dmenglert
dmenglert

I love all tech savy people telling my Mom and my sis that avg is the bes thing since sliced bread and free, but who aren't around to clean the machine when its infected. AVG is great for those who are tech savy but not for novices it just doesn't protect as well. I was leary about putting Norton on becaus the last one I tried was 2005 and it was resource hog, but I didn't make no where near as many family tech support calls. I installed 2009, and was surprised at how much lighter and faster it is. It is now where close to the bloat of 2005, and I would put its speed up against AVG or Kaspersky any day. I realize this won't be poplular because it is all the fashion to bash big tech companys but I saw it with my own eyes and didnt' read it from a blogger.

Forum Surfer
Forum Surfer

Their products are actually great if you've ever worked with them. While they may not be as robust as a top of the line Cisco model, they are still quality items. You can get a business class switch from Nortel for less than 1/2 the price of a Cisco model with the same specs. Nortel gives you a nice gui for non technical folk and a lifetime warranty. Cisco gives you however much warranty you can afford (not much usually) and everything is drastically more experience. We're a large organization here and we can afford Cisco, but I really don't see why Nortel hasn't trampled Cisco/Linksys in small business network sales. Especially given these economically trying times when it is getting harder and harder for even myself as a long time Cisco fan to justify Cisco's high prices. If I couldn't afford Cisco, I would without a doubt go the Nortel route. Even their VOiP phones are nice, feature rich and much cheaper than Cisco stuff. What gives? Just goes to show you that a quality product with great service and high feature content at a bargain price doesn't always sale itself. I have received alot more vendor calls from people desperate to sale Nortel stuff, even resorting to green tactics: http://www33.nortel.com/energycalculator/en/saveenergy.html

sb0804
sb0804

I go back a LONG way with Novell and they always seem to pop up on these lists. I have to wonder if it is for real this time.

buddyfarr
buddyfarr

We are using the NOD32 enterprise edition in our offices. It works pretty well. Took some time to figure it out since we were used to Symantec's Corporate Edition. NOD actually replaced Symantec's because it cut our costs significantly.

nico.verschueren
nico.verschueren

I also find it strange that VMware is on the list. And for MS and Xen closing in. I don?t think MS will ever be as good as VMware unless they take over something and change their ways. And Xen is part of Citrix which is also on the list. For me also a surprise. They have good products and always had a good vision for the future. Maybe if MS will buy Citrix, it will take VMware and Citrix of the list?

Nori Sarel
Nori Sarel

The VMWare ESX product is lightyears ahead of anything MS has. MS can't match them in speed and security since the VMWare OS is based on Linux. Also the VMWare workstation product is far superior to the MS product. I do agree that it is too highly priced. VMWare Workstation should be priced like VMWare Fusion and then I think their position would be a lot more secure.

jalexmason
jalexmason

Based on the moves EMC has been making lately, it would be really tough to get them to sell off vmware to another company. No, with all this "green" mentality going around I think you'll see the brand stay long term.

Oz_Media
Oz_Media

Over 100 years, pioneers in every aspect of their industry and taken down by lesser systems simply due to thier networking hardware penetration and market hype. I remember when all those companies started in on telecom, Cisco, 30Com etc. and they were a laughing stock to be avoided. They still don't stack up to teh real players but IT staff are now in charge of telecom it seems and they buy BRANDS, not systems. When designing systems for larger companies, I found the IT department didn't have teh slightest clue what is important in business telecom, for users in teh office. As a result they recommended and installed systems that were inferior to teh old, existing POTS systems, only to have teh boss get a flood of employee complaints about limitations and request a different system to be installed. It was VERY common for Cisco, avaya and 3-Com to install and bre replaced in weeks. But IT staff seem to have control, even if many don't have a clue about business telecom needs. It is the IT staff that put 30Com on teh map to begin with and it is those same staff who help to wrongly push a very important and invaluable player into chapetr 11. Wonder what telecom advancements Cisco will intriduce next year? None, they don't want ot be telecom pioneers, that's not thier field of expertise, nor do they really care, its just about obtaining market share.

buddyfarr
buddyfarr

That is because Shoretel has as good or better product than Nortel does at the same or lower prices. I finished a Shoretel install at my business last year and I can't say enough great stuff about it. Centrally managed VoIP over several sites. Saves us a ton of time and money managing it with no problems so far. We did look at Cisco but I think that Shoretel has a better product at a MUCH lower price. Right now I think the only factor that is holding them back for large organizations is that it scales to 10,000 phones. Once they bypass that limit they will go big into the larger organizations.

therendeen
therendeen

As a former Senior System Engineer with Nortel, we usually ran into the "800 # gorilla" and we could beat them if the decision were strictly based on price/performance or engineering merit. Cisco was always much better at coherent marketing strategies than we were and they had IOS on all they platforms; we had disparate management interfaces depending on where the platform originated: Northern Telecom, Synoptics or Wellfleet. Often we were characterized as that stogy Canadian PBX manufacturer; yes, we were that but we were alot more too but the perception was set in the customer's eye and we couldn't figure out how to change that without giving up a lot of our core beliefs and values. Certainly, the nearly endless layoffs, restructurings and questionable accounting practices and scandals didn't help Nortel either; customers really don't like buying from a company with a very uncertain future. Cisco has also had success in their certification program, a CCIE meant alot more on a resume' than the comporable Nortel certification One other point, Cisco has always had an excellent channels organization, during my tenure Nortel tended toward direct sales though we weren't as insane as Lucent Technologies who would pit their direct sales force against their channel partners... therende@hotmail.com

Oz_Media
Oz_Media

Havign worked in Business telecom for many years, I rippe dout so many Cisco and Avaya's ot be replaced with Nortel and NEC VoIP and POTS PBX's its not funny. People buy into market hype and watch too much news I think, forming their opinions from someone else's opinion instead of facts and reality.

JamesRL
JamesRL

You may have noticed in the past that I've been reluctant to mention the name of some of my previous employers - like to keep some anonymity. But I am a former Nortel employee. Nortel's fall has much more to do with accounting scandals than product or service. People buy phone equipment with a long term view - they like to keep it in service much longer than say a typical server in a datacentre. But the accouting scandals eroded people's confidence in their long term viability. The stock now trades at .38 cents a share. Nortel generally makes good products and produces innovations, but given the number of staff reductions (now at 35,000 staff down from 100,000 in 2000) its hard to think they have enough R&D staff to service their broad product line. I still have friends there who still believe. But in the news this morning, they are seriously looking at bankruptcy protection. James

Oz_Media
Oz_Media

I've seen it too, if they are not on top or sit quietly in the background, they must be having problems. Novell is quiet and that's what saves them money. Their market is not teh SMB anymore, they toyed with it and decided it wasn't an attainable marketshare. They DO sit all over Europe in government as the main servers, even behind Win servers and Win networks. They have good market penetration in their chosen demo, as does SUN, which doesn't even come near the common server market we see MS owning in North America. Even here, in North America, many top level MS servers have Novell behind them. I think that Novell will be alright, quiet but into key areas with massive accounts and good penetration.

jasonhiner
jasonhiner

a large installed base on NetWare (especially huge networks in financial sector, government, and universities), and they make money off recurring licensing fees from all of that gear. They just haven't made many new products that have been money-makers in a long time. The question is how long can they continue to live off of that old NetWare revenue without a viable new product?

---TK---
---TK---

MS will bail them out again, when they need it... How many times has MS done this? 3 or 2 times, I forget... Microsoft still needs a competitor of some sort.

Forum Surfer
Forum Surfer

But Microsoft has proved time and time again that you don't need the best product to be the most successful in your field.

JamesRL
JamesRL

As for BNR being Nortel, that not quite true. BNR (Bell Northern Research) was half owned by Northen Telecom and half by Bell Canada. In the mid 90s Bell sold its share to Nortel (the new name for Northern Telecom) and it was blended in to Nortel. BNR was to Nortel what Bell Labs was to AT&T - the home of the pure research. BNR are the ones who went into the wacky far out stuff, and Nortel had to make product to sell. The reasons why the stock price went crazy is because telecom companies were expanding like crazy in anticipation of the internet boom expanding beyond any reason. Nortel and its competitors made huge mistakes buying overvalued companies to add them to their portfolio, and when the market collapsed with left with a lot of debt. Add to that the fator that the traditional telecom buyers like MCI, Sprint etc were collapsing also didn't help. The financial scandals were just the icing on the cake. Lucent didn't have a scandal, they didn't survive and they were as big as Nortel. The scandal did make potential investors and purchasers nervous. The other thing was that the layoffs gutted the research side and new product was not forthcoming. The telecom business isn't easy. My current employer uses a 25 year old PBX and has no inclination to buy a new one. Telecom purchase can often be deferred, there is no wear and tear like cars or manufacturing equipment. Mitel turned around by the way because one of the founders, Terry Matthews came back and re-energised the company, so consider that before you slam all executives as equal. James

ten_inch_hero
ten_inch_hero

I remember when Nortel was BNR (Bell Northern Research) and was a global force. And then there was Roth and smoke and mirrors that came with it. Lets face it, the bust came when everyone realized they couldn't produce what they had planned and promoted. Either the technology wasn't there yet or the prains hadn't gotten their heads around what could be - probably a lot of both. Same thing happened with JDS (Une-phase or, as we prefer, Just a phase). Remember when the stock prices were upwards of $150/share? Where are they now? Pennies! Some might say that it was the economic downturn that sounded the death-nell for these giants but isn't it obvious that the leaders of the pack were either incompitent, greedy, ego-centric to the point of uncaring or a combination of the three? Hi tech has gone through this before and come out the other side- a little battered and bruised, mind you, but still functioning - look at Mitel! What we need to see rise out of these ashes are some stronger regulations regarding the board room antics and the responsibilities and consequenses. It appears that rape and pillage were the order of the day a few years ago and now it's all come home to roost. I knew of a lot on very honourable and righteous visionaries that built BNR to what it became and they're probably all whirling in their graves. Rightly so! It truly was the backbone of the Canadian Technical Scene. I hope the board has the decency to at least hang their heads in shame while they're sitting beside their Bahamian pools sucking back sangrias.

Oz_Media
Oz_Media

As a BDM, that's what I deal with all day, every day. Branding and selling brands. I always rep hardware that has minimal brand penetration. So I am used to working against popular brands (there's no money in popular brands due to market saturation resulting in lower margins. I prefer to market a higher quality product, with lower market penetration to specialists in their field. I find it more interesting, more challenging, and more financially rewarding. ANYONE can move what's popular, it takes work and experience to move what's not or what's' new.

roaming
roaming

People buying brands.

Oz_Media
Oz_Media

In 86 deregulation was only possible due to equal ease of access. EEA was 100% reliant on digital trunk switching for long distance, this Nortel's DMS-250's are in use all over the world today and we rely on them for lower cost calling almost every day. With over 100 years of industry breakthroughs it is a truly sad day. It reminds me of when WalMart started taking out major Canadian departments stores, then they close the WalMart and move on to another town. #$#%^@(!#@|)%*(#\e$'ers!

Forum Surfer
Forum Surfer

in the mid 90's doing on-site warranty support for Cisco and Nortel (through a 3rd party partner) I'd say the networking side of things was a 60/40 split between cisco and nortel. I noticed most shops were switching to Cisco though, particularly the larger ones. Nortel has always seemed to dominate the PBX industry where big money contracts are involved. You'd think that alone could have kept them afloat. Having many talented friends in the industry that were downsized by Nortel leads me to think they have some serious management woes. Most of these guys went on to have outstanding careers with other companies like Cisco, RedHat and Avaya.

JamesRL
JamesRL

Nortel was a telecom maker before it was into computer networking. The main product line was the Central office switching units that major providers used as their backbones. They also made office phone systems. When I joined in 91, that was their major bread and butter. And they were the technical leaders, and AT&T were the cheaper alternative. Nortel started in the data field with phone wictehs that could do voice and networking. They did what they called the 90 degree turn where they turned their focus to internet products. They bought Bay Networks to give them a fuller product line on the low end. But when the boom went bust and their books were examined, big problems were uncovered. (this happened after I left). Their market dried up (telecoms were hurting), market confidence in them deteriorated, and the snowball continued downhill. More financial manipulation came to light(to increase corporate bonuses while layoffs where happeneing) and we soon all began to wonder if there was enough of the company left to put out the kind of innovations they needed to overcome the scandal and gain back market share. I have no apologies for my time at Nortel, when I was there it was a highly professional and ethical company who treated us and our customers well, and who created great products. I learned a great deal from a leader in software development (second largest number of lines of code by one organization in the world, NASA was number one) and project mangagement. So I am even more sad today to see a great company preparing to slip below the waves. An acquisition may be their only hope. James

JamesRL
JamesRL

I'm (formerly) from head office, and I'm here to help. Nortel's tunnel vision came from the CO market, where they marketed directly to major telecom providers around the world. They made their name on outstanding tech, and competed against AT&T on price. In the late 90s, during the "90 degree turn" they turned their focus on the internet makret, but it came to quickly to change the corporate culture. And of course the acquisitions were, in hindsight, a big part of the problem - they paid far too much(in hindisght, but everyone else was doing the same) and got far little value. They didn't learn from their acquisitions and capture the energy that the smaller companies had. It was a great ride while it lasted. James

buddyfarr
buddyfarr

Forum Surfer - I tried to send you a private message but couldn't. :( anyway, if you are still looking please look at the shoretel systems. They can scale to 10,000 phones and the system works great. I installed mine just over a year ago over several sites and it works like a dream. The pricing is great compared to Cisco and the product is marvelous!

Oz_Media
Oz_Media

I love them for networking, hate them for telecom, its not their field and they are nto very good at it. It took them almost a year to make off premise call forwarding a feature, stating it was not needed. Fortunately they realized how important it was to businesses and finally caught up. Most of these guys jumped into telecom thinking they knew what was needed, but didn't have a clue what businesses really relied on, just the features that they used in their IT departments. as a result, 3--Coms and Cisco's were my gravy for a good two years, "yeah we can fix that, I'll buy it from you below market value and sell you an NEC NEAXPBX or a Nortel BCM. They seem to be catching up but it was only the IT staff that saw any value in them while they were new garbage trying to play foreign sport. Just because you can build routers, doesn't mean you understand business VoIP or telecom needs in any way at all.

Forum Surfer
Forum Surfer

There are obviously some problems that need to be addressed within nortel. I'm definitely concerned since we renegotiated a 4 year deal with Nortel for our PBX just last year. We wanted to go Cisco or Avaya but it was hard to argue Nortel's price point. The rest of our network continues to remain Cisco. With a large WAN spread throughout the city connected via leased fiber lines it's impossible to replace everything at once or even stage it all to happen in a 6-8 month time frame...so we'll likely remain Cisco forever. I've always said though, if I was starting fresh or replacing just one building's leased infrastructure...I'd be hard pressed not to purchase Nortel given their feature content to price ratio versus Cisco. Thier networking equipment when equipped apples to apples gets you 80% of Cisco's quality for %50 of Cisco's price IMO. A worthwhile downgrade if you ask me, especially in economically trying times. Given the latest bankruptcy though...I'd stay away. There's no doubt who the big player is if you've ever been to Cisco Networker's conventions compared to others. And for crying out loud they hire seemingly super models that really know their stuff for sales reps!

Pringles86
Pringles86

To actually doing... Nortel files for bankruptcy protection, shares plunge Stocks are now trading at 7.5 cents.

ID.10.T
ID.10.T

My first server was Novell 4.1 then 5.1. I later transitioned to Microsoft mainly because of Exchange messaging. However, I severely missed the tightly integrated User / Group setup and configuration process that Netware offered.

Oz_Media
Oz_Media

Novell servers literally RUN Germany's government, and several others in Europe when MS is a hell show to be avoided. With reliability, stability and security on the backend, there is now desire for a new product. That's actually one of teh appeals i found when installing and managing Netware, people don't have to upgrade each year, and THTA they like, compared ot teh MS mantra of buying a new flavour, retraining staff and investing tens if not hundreds of thousands every few years.

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