In an effort to shift its attention from hardware to software, EMC Corp. said it is reorganizing into three separate business units focusing on hardware, open software and services.
The Hopkinton, Mass.-based information storage giant also removed Moshe Yanai, the computer engineer who developed EMC's flagship product, Symmetrix, from day-to-day hardware operations. He will be replaced by Erez Ofer, 39, who was promoted to executive vice president and will head the Open Software Operations unit, which is responsible for the development and acceleration of EMC's open storage software products.
EMC, like its competitors, has suffered from a weakened economy and downturn in technology spending.
Despite industry speculation that Yanai was being pushed out in favor of someone more in tune with the company's decision to shift its attention from its hardware products to software, EMC spokesman Michael Gallant said Yanai was promoted to "EMC fellow" and will advise Joe Tucci, the company's president and CEO.
"He'll still be sitting next to Joe; he'll just be sitting a little closer," Gallant said.
In a statement, the company said David Donatelli, 36, will head the Storage Platforms Operations, which will integrate all engineering and manufacturing operations for EMC's market-leading storage platforms.
Frank Hauck, 42, will continue to be in charge of Customer Operations, which is responsible for maximizing the worldwide distribution and support of EMC's industry-leading storage platforms, open software technologies and services and for ensuring the quality of customers' experience with the company.
"I am extremely confident that the formation of these operating units will strengthen the alignment of our operations with our open storage strategy and accelerate both the adoption of our solutions and the extension of EMC's market leadership," Tucci said in the statement. "These operating units, under the leadership of three of EMC's most accomplished and respected executives, will enable faster time to market for new products, greater manufacturing efficiencies and even higher levels of customer satisfaction than the world-class standards we have traditionally set."
Tony Prigmore, an analyst at Enterprise Storage Group Inc. in Milford, Mass., said EMC has aligned its organization with where the company wants to go.
"The future of the company is based on its high-functionality software," Prigmore said. "So rather than have its software engineering efforts be subservient to its hardware-based legacy, EMC's new organization shows that software engineering is on a par or more strategically important than hardware."
Prigmore said he believed the decision to remove Yanai from hardware engineering was a mutual one.