|Type||A wholly owned subsidiary of Hitachi, Ltd (NYSE: HIT)|
|Industry||Computer data storage systems|
Data storage software
|Gajen Kandiah (Chief Executive Officer)|
Number of employees
|6,300 employees in more than 100 countries and regions|
It was a wholly owned subsidiary of Hitachi Ltd. and part of the Hitachi Information Systems & Telecommunications Division. In 2017 its operations were merged with Pentaho and Hitachi Insight Group to form Hitachi Vantara.
Itel was an equipment leasing company founded in 1967 by Peter Redfield and Gary Friedman, initially focusing on leasing IBM mainframes. Through creative financial arrangements and investments, Itel was able to lease IBM mainframes to customers at costs below what customers would have paid, making them second to IBM itself in revenues.
A joint venture between National Semiconductor and Hitachi formed in 1977 was contracted by Itel to manufacture IBM-compatible mainframes branded as Advanced Systems. After initial success shipping 200 such systems and netting profits of $73 million, Itel increased their investments and personnel to market their Advanced Systems brand. When Itel requested lower prices in order to compete with IBM, Charlie Sporck, CEO of National Semiconductor, persuaded Itel to commit to long-term contracts with National Semiconductor and Hitachi.
Thereafter, news leaked that IBM was releasing a new technologically superior line of computers, and customers responded by holding back purchases, causing Itel's inventory to build up drastically. Hitachi agreed to Itel's request to cut back on shipment, but National Semiconductor was adamant in persisting with what the industry[who?] termed as National's blackmailing of Itel. In 1979, Redfield was forced to resign as CEO, and National Semiconductor took over Itel Advanced Systems, including its sales and marketing team.
National renamed the division to National Advanced Systems (NAS), assembling and selling IBM-compatibles where the central processing unit (CPU) was imported from Hitachi. National and Hitachi often depended on IBM's gradual and restrained roll-out of newer models to feed on IBM's technology and market share thereby allowing NAS occasional successes.
NAS began shipping its AS/9000 DPC Plug Compatible mainframes in late 1981. IBM, however, had invested and obtained success in semiconductor technologies which enabled them to build powerful computers at lower costs. Meanwhile, the mainframe market was in decline as mini- and microcomputers, and the UNIX operating system gained popularity. Mainframe makers such as Sperry, Honeywell, Burroughs, NCR and Control Data were gradually being forced out of the mainframe market. Both NAS and Amdahl (the other IBM plug compatible mainframe maker), faced technological and sales pressure from IBM.
National Semiconductor and its subsidiary NAS were sued in 1983 by IBM for $2.5 billion on charges of using computer technology secrets stolen from IBM, as the result of an investigation by the United States Government into National's collaboration with Hitachi. Hitachi settled with IBM and licensed the mainframe operating system software from IBM. In 1983, NAS ceased the manufacture of its own line of mainframes (which had Hitachi processors) and became a reseller of Hitachi's mainframe and data storage products.
Hitachi Data Systems (HDS) was founded in 1989 when Hitachi and Electronic Data Systems (EDS) acquired National Advanced Systems (NAS) from National Semiconductor and renamed it Hitachi Data Systems. Prior to that, the origins of the company had a history that stretched back to Itel, an early player in the mainframe market. Itel's Computer Products Group sold National Semiconductors' IBM plug compatible mainframes. In 1979 National Semiconductor took over Itel and formed National Advanced Systems (NAS). NAS shifted from manufacturing mainframes and began marketing systems from Hitachi. In 1999, Hitachi bought out EDS's share, and HDS became a wholly owned subsidiary of Hitachi. For many years, HDS sold Hitachi IBM plug compatible mainframes and storage systems, but in 2000, it exited the mainframe business and shifted its focus to enterprise storage.
On February 28, 1989, National Semiconductor and Hitachi announced their agreement that Hitachi and Electronic Data Systems (EDS) would jointly acquire NAS for $398 million in cash, of which Hitachi would own 80%. Memorex Telex and National had earlier, on January 10, 1989, announced plans on a joint venture "under which each company would own half of the unit and National would get $250 million plus four million shares of Memorex Telex". However, National proceeded to negotiate with Hitachi after Memorex's offer expired as National had felt that the Hitachi–EDS offer was a better deal as it entailed no further financial obligation or commitment on the part of National after the sale besides reaping a pre-tax profit of $200 million from the sale. By that time, Memorex Telex was able to arrange financing for the deal, but National had already accepted the Hitachi–EDS deal.
The acquisition was envisaged to provide Hitachi a better presence in the United States to compete with IBM. The entity was renamed Hitachi Data Systems (HDS).
On January 29, 1999, Hitachi announced it would take over EDS' stake in HDS, appointing Jun Naruse as CEO of its new subsidiary. Naruse had been an engineer with the RAID Systems Division involved in storage systems development. Having total control of the company, Hitachi infused Hitachi Data Systems with its corporate culture, ethics and practices.
On April 6, 2000, Hitachi Data Systems announced a re-organization to focus on storage systems rather than mainframes. Shortly thereafter (June 26, 2000), the first HDS storage product was unveiled, the Freedom Storage Lightning 9900, featuring the crossbar switched architecture to interconnect memory, disks, servers and other external devices instead of the traditional bus architecture. In addition to HDS sales, HP OEM’d and Sun resold the 9900 and succeeding generations, which had additional capabilities such as virtualization of external Hitachi and third-party storage systems to form storage pools.
In January 2001, HDS announced the Thunder 9200, a mid-range modular storage system aimed at the small and medium business market, sold mainly through resellers.
Hitachi Data Systems high-end and mid-range modular storage systems were complemented by software for storage management, content management, business continuity, replication, data protection, and IT operations.
In 2002, Hitachi acquired Comstock Systems Corp, and analysts estimated 35% market share.
The culture of Hitachi Vantara is influenced by the values of Hitachi Ltd.: wa (harmony, trust, and respect), makoto (integrity, honesty), and kaitakusha-seishin (pioneering spirit and challenges).
Hitachi Data Systems appeared in Fortune magazine's "100 Best Companies to Work For" list in 2012, 2013 and 2014 and was ranked No. 8 in the Fortune list of top-paying companies in 2012. Chief Executive Magazine gave HDS a ranking of No. 16 in its “40 Best Companies for Leaders” list for 2012. Hitachi Data Systems was recognized among the "Best Companies to Work For" in France and Poland in 2011. In 2010 Hitachi Data Systems was accredited by the Best Companies organization in the United Kingdom.
Hitachi TrueCopy, formerly known as Hitachi Open Remote Copy (HORC) or Hitachi Remote Copy (HRC) or Hitachi Asynchronous Remote Copy (HARC), is a remote mirroring feature from Hitachi Data Systems storage arrays available for both open systems and IBM z/OS. Truecopy is an implementation of IBM's PPRC protocol.
Synchronous TrueCopy causes each write to the primary volume to be performed to the secondary as well, and the I/O is considered complete only when updates to both primary and secondary have completed. Asynchronous TrueCopy stores time-stamped IO packets in the primary disk array and transfers them to the secondary array subject to link bandwidth. When the primary array's buffer is exhausted, it starts flagging tracks on the primary to be duplicated to the secondary when bandwidth permits.
Related products include:
Hitachi Data Systems has four types of partners: Technology, Global Systems Integrators, Hitachi TrueNorth Partners, and Hitachi TrueNorth Advisor Partners.