We asked content management maven Ann Rockley of The Rockley Group to share her thoughts about EMC Documentum’s acquisition of X-Hive. This is what she had to say.

TCW: How significant do you feel the acquisition of X-Hive by EMC is?

Ann Rockley Very. As Peter O’Kelly of the Burton Group stated in the original eWeek announcement, “X-Hive will ultimately provide the foundation for EMC’s future content management products and services, focusing on XML content components rather than documents at the center of the architecture.” This is a major shift in industry focus! We’re not just talking what some people consider “niche market” content such as technical publications where content component management is most established, EMC intends to use X-Hive as the underlying structure for its entire product line. In other words, XML-based content component management for enterprise content.

And EMC is not alone. SDL’s recent acquisition of Tridion, a web-based content component management system, made very clear that where translation is concerned, XML and content-component management provides a significant strategic advantage.

TCW: Do you think this will impact other vendors in the industry?

Ann Rockley: Definitely. For the first time the industry has a Tier 1 enterprise player. There are a number of very good players in this market, but now they will have to compete in a whole new way.

TCW: Do you have any concerns?

Ann Rockley: My biggest concern is for the existing users of X-Hive and its OEM partners. X-Hive is bound to disappear into the fabric of Documentum, which is good for Documentum customers, but not so good for X-Hive customers.

Read more about this topic in Ann Rockley’s column, EMC and X-Hive: A major shift in the industry? in CMSWatch. And, look for the CMS Watch Content Component Management Report later this year. Rockley is the lead analyst on the report, so it’s sure to be jam-packed with useful information. Finally, you’ll be able to compare apples to apples when shopping for a content management system.

See also: X-Hive Acquisition Boosts Object-Based Technology, Says XML CMS Expert.