3PAR accepts HP’s US$2.4B offer, Dell bows out

After Dell matched HP’s US$2B offer for 3PAR on Thursday, HP wasted no time increasing its offer, with 3PAR accepting the new US$2.4B bid.

That was enough for Dell, which announced in a press release it was withdrawing from further bidding. Dell is entitled to a US$72 million break-up fee from 3PAR under the terms of an earlier acquisition agreement.

Prior to the bidding war between HP and Dell, Dell had originally signed an agreement to acquire 3PAR for US$1.13B, with provisioning which would allow for matching, competing bids.

In other related news, 3PAR, which is already the subject of a bidding war between Hewlett-Packard and Dell, is now among a group of companies being sued by Crossroads Systems for patent infringement.

Crossroads’ products include storage routers and storage bridges, a database security appliance, virtual tape appliances, tape encryption and file migration software.

In a suit filed Wednesday in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Texas, the company alleges that 3Par, D-Link, Rorke Data, Chelsio Communications, DataCore Software, iStor Networks and American Megatrends infringe on its patent for a storage router that provides virtual local storage on remote storage devices.

The lawsuit names seven models of 3PAR’s InServe Storage Servers and the 3Par Inform Operating System as infringing on the patent. Crossroads says it has notified all the defendants that it believes infringe its patent but that they continue to sell the products at issue. Crossroads names an additional patent covering a similar technology that it says 3PAR and DataCore also infringe.

3PAR declined to comment on the suit Wednesday, and the other companies did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

3PAR received the latest offer on Friday in the bidding war between HP and Dell. HP offered US$30 per share, topping Dell’s offer of $27 per share earlier in the day. 3PAR has not yet accepted HP’s bid, and Dell has until the end of the day Wednesday to respond.

3PAR offers technology that allows storage resources to be provided on demand. Both HP and Dell think it will round out their offerings for building private compute clouds.

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