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EMC, Critical Path Marry Storage, Messaging

Data storage leader EMC and Internet communications specialist Critical Path will partner to provide telecom carriers and large companies advanced messaging systems.

The offering combines with EMC's storage hardware and software with Critical Path's messaging and identity management technology. It also includes tools and methodologies to help users convert from other messaging systems.

The companies will stress scalability, availability, performance and cost of ownership when pitching potential customers.

As part of the cooperative agreement, EMC, of Hopkinton, Mass., and Critical Path, of San Francisco, will work together to propose additional solutions that utilize each company's assets.

"Teaming with leaders in the telecommunications market helps EMC better understand our customer requirements," said Bill Nelson, senior vice president of EMC's telecommunications, media, and entertainment group.

The companies already have a working relationship with EMC providing storage services for Critical Path's hosted messaging service. In addition to the new pact, Critical Path will boost its use of EMC storage in that unit.

"There are tremendous synergies between Critical Path and EMC, including a significant number of joint customers," said Patricia Hume, senior vice president of partners and channels for Critical Path. "We view EMC as a very strategic partner whose technology is core to our business."

Financial terms were not released.

As the market for IT equipment has waned because of the economic slowdown, EMC and other vendors have turned to partnerships to help break into new markets. For example, last year, the company signed a multi-million co-branding agreement with Austin, Texas computer maker Dell .

More recently, EMC announced a joint storage consulting initiative with New York's Accenture .