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Tacit Tabs New President to Ramp Up Biz

Storage appliance maker Tacit Networks has hired InfiniBand networking veteran Charles Foley as president to guide the company's growth in the burgeoning wide area file services (WAFS) market, internetnews.com has learned.

Foley, former CEO and board member at InfiniCon Systems until he stepped down in August, will be responsible for the company's business development and strategic alliances, product management, corporate marketing, as well as product direction and positioning.

The executive, who goes by the nickname Chuck, joins the South Plainfield, N.J., company as it is expanding its sphere of influence in the nascent market for WAFS, which research firms like The Taneja Group believe poses a $1 billion opportunity.

Tacit makes storage systems that provide WAFS, which help companies exchange content between data centers and remote offices over wide area networks (WAN) , where performance is typically poor. Tacit makes appliances that, when put at respective sites, help companies distribute content effectively over a WAN.

Stephanie Balaouras, senior analyst of enterprise computing and networking at The Yankee Group, said tabbing Foley, who has many contacts in the networking industry from his tenure at InfiniCon, makes sense.

"He was trying to build relationships for a networking technology that is struggling to gain a foothold," Balaouras told internetnews.com. "If he can do well in that market, which is actually a growing market and is viable, he should be pretty successful."

Balaouras said Tacit's strength derives from several technologies that help maintain consistency of the file and keep its content intact. A supplemental technology to traditional file systems, Tacit's WAFS machines target network-attached storage (NAS) systems.

"Tacit allows various branch offices and other remote data centers to share data, so they help compress the data and move it quickly over the wide area network," Balaouras said. "This is about how to get information over that WAN faster and more effectively."

Tacit is gaining momentum. The company inked a partnership with IBM in July in which it agreed to provide multi-level support, product qualification, as well as resell Big Blue's products. IBM in turn agreed to provide global support for Tacit's WAFS product line and resell its appliances and software.

Earlier this year, Tacit acquired the intellectual assets of AttachStor, the e-mail storage management software from Attachsoft.

Because the market is so young, Tacit has few competitors. Riverbed Technology is one such standalone rival, making products that improve the performance of applications over WANs. Actona was another, but it was acquired by Cisco Systems earlier this year.