Roundup: IBM, SGI, Blue Coat

This week's news includes IBM's announcement that it will start shipping the world's fastest microprocessors, SGI reporting earnings and executive changes at Blue Coat.

Here’s a roundup of this week’s headlines from the data center and hosting industry:

IBM to ship world's fastest microprocessor. IBM announced the details of the world's fastest computer chip - the microprocessor in a new version of the IBM mainframe that begins shipping to customers on September 10. The z196 processor for the zEnterprise System clocked in at a record-breaking 5.2 GHz. The new zEnterprise 196 contains 96 of these microprocessors, offers 60 percent more capacity than its predecessor, the System z10, and uses about the same amount of electricity.

SGI reports fourth quarter and fiscal 2010 results.  SGI announced financial results for its fourth quarter and fiscal 2010.  Revenue for 2010 was $403.7 million with a gross margin of 22.2 percent. "Fiscal 2010 was a transformative year for SGI with many successes," said SGI CEO Mark J. Barrenechea. "We focused on completing the integration, delivering innovative products to market and making investments in key areas that will serve as a foundation for future growth. Further, we have strategically focused the company on the $9 billion technical computing market, where we have begun to emerge as a trusted partner." In a separate press release, SGI announced that it has resumed its $40 million stock repurchase program. SGI is estimating 2011 annual revenue to be between $550 million and $575 million.

Blue Coat executive appointments.  Blue Coat Systems (BCSI) announced its board of directors has named Michael J. Borman as president and CEO and Brian M. NeSmith as chief product officer, effective September 1, 2010. Borman was also named to the board of directors for the company. Borman was previously with Avocent, serving as CEO before the company was acquired by Emerson Electric. Prior to Avocent, Borman spent a total of 30 years at IBM in numerous senior executive positions. “Blue Coat has an enviable customer base, a strong product portfolio, and an excellent reputation for technology innovation,” said Mr. Borman. “I am excited about our future opportunities and look forward to joining Brian and the rest of the executive management team.” Wall Street responded kindly to the news, as Blue Coat stock soared more than 12 percent on Wednesday.

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