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March 11, 2016updated 05 Sep 2016 7:04am

EMC, IBM, HPE lead enterprise storage pack in 2015 with market revenues of $37bn

News: Q4 2015 drops 2.2% yoy and revenues tumbled to $10.4bn.

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Enterprise storage systems revenues grew 2.2% in 2015 to $37.1bn, despite a slowdown in quarter four.

The market topped 2014’s $36.4bn, with EMC, HPE and Dell leading the sector as revenues topped $7.1bn, $5.8bn and $3.6bn respectively for the full year of 2015.

According to IDC, the biggest drop in revenues affected IBM, as the company experienced a drop of 23.2% in growth with 2015’s FY revenues down to $2.7bn when compared to 2014’s FY $3.5bn. NetApp was the second vendor to have the largest drop at 14.3% (FY 2015: $2.7bn; FY 2014: $3.1bn).

HPE has had an increase in revenues of 12.6%, the largest growth of all enterprise storage systems vendors.

Original design manufacturers (ODM) direct vendor revenues increased 11.9% from $4bn in 2014 to $4.6bn last year.

IDC also included an ‘others’ category for companies such as SanDisk, NetGear and Hitachi. In this space, ‘others’ saw revenues swell 15.2% to $10.7bn (FY 2014: $9.3bn).

As for market share, for FY 2015, EMC had 19.2%, down from the previous year 20.8%. HPE, Dell and IBM followed with 15.5%, 9.7% and 7.3%, respectively, for FY 2015.

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NetApp secured 7.2% of the market, ODM direct vendors 12.3% and ‘others’ 28.8%.

The total all flash array (AFA) market generated $955.4m in revenue during the last quarter of 2015, up 71.9% yoy. The hybrid flash array (HFA) segment of the market represented $2.9 billion in revenue and 28.0% market share.

Despite 2015 closing with a positive growth of 2.2%, the last quarter of the year closed negative 2.2%.

Revenues were down from $10.6bn in Q4 2014 to $10.4bn in Q4 2015. Total capacity shipments were up 10.7% (year over year) to 35.5 exabytes during the quarter.

Sales of server-based storage were up 6.1% during the quarter and accounted for $2.2 billion in revenue.

Apart from HPE that had an increase of 7.9% in revenue growth and the ‘others’ category with a 5.5% increase, all other enterprise storage system vendors experienced a drop in revenue.

HPE’s revenues topped $1.6bn in Q4 2015, up from $1.5bn in Q4 2014, and ‘others’ increased their market share to 28.4% with revenues reaching $2.9bn (Q4 2014: $2.7bn).

Yet, the company was outpaced by EMC, which despite a drop of 5.2%, secured a market share of 21.5%, with revenues of $2.2bn in Q4 2015 (Q4 2014: $2.4bn).

NetApp, which in Q4 2015 had a 6.3% market share, dropped the most at 14.8%, from $763.6m in Q4 2014 to $650.9m in the last quarter of last year.

Dell and IBM shared nearly the same market share at 8.9% and 8.6% respectively. Dell’s revenues dropped 3.3% (Q4 2015: $920.7m; Q4 2014: $951.9m). IBM dropped 5.5% from $939.6m in the last quarter of 2014 to $892.9m in Q4 2015.

As for ODMs, revenue growth was also negative at 14.4% (Q4 2014: $1.4bn; Q4 2015: $1.2bn).

Liz Conner, research manager for storage systems at IDC said: "The enterprise storage market closed out 2015 on a slight downturn, as spending on traditional external arrays continues to decline.

"Over the past year, end user focus has shifted towards server-based storage, software-defined storage, and cloud-based storage. As a result, traditional enterprise storage vendors are forced to revamp and update their product portfolios to meet these shifting demands."

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