New VMware CEO Pat Gelsinger is formerly president and COO, EMC Information Infrastructure Products.

The VAR Guy

July 17, 2012

2 Min Read
New VMware CEO Pat Gelsinger: Who Is EMC, Intel Veteran?

VMware CEO Pat Gelsinger

New VMware CEO Pat Gelsinger is formerly president and COO, EMC Information Infrastructure Products. Gelsinger replaces former VMware CEO Paul Maritz. But what is Gelsinger’s background — especially as it relates to VMware’s  partner program, led by new VP of Channel Sales Frank Rauch. Here’s some background.

First, some qualifiers: VMware (NYSE: VMW) has not confirmed the CEO change nor has the company confirmed Maritz’s departure. The apparent CEO change, first reported by CRN, comes as VMware prepares to announce quarterly results.

VMware: Hits or Misses?

There are two frames of mind about the apparent CEO change:

  1. Either VMware is continuing to hum along with strong growth, but is adjusting its management team and potentially spinning off some businesses (including Cloud Foundry) to help further accelerate growth.

  2. Or VMware has stumbled amid price increases and growing competition from Microsoft Windows Server, Hyper-V and System Center.

VMware’s financial health and profit outlook will become clearer when the company announces financial results on July 23. In the meantime: Investors are nervous and VMware shares are down 3 percent today.

Gelsinger: An EMC and Intel Veteran

In the meantime, channel partners and investors are checking Gelsinger’s background. According to his EMC bio:

“Gelsinger is responsible for EMC’s Information Infrastructure product portfolio, including information storage divisions, as well as Data Computing, Backup and Recovery Systems, RSA Security, Enterprise Solutions, and the office of the Chief Technology Officer. He reports to Joe Tucci, EMC’s Chairman and CEO.”

Before joining EMC, Gelsinger was senior VP and co-general manager of Intel’s Digital Enterprise Group. Under his leadership, the group developed the Intel Nehalem architecture and pushed Intel deeper into the data center. Gelsinger also holds six patents — suggesting that he’s an engineer and technologist rather than a channel leader.

VMware Channel Partner Program

Enter Frank Rauch, an HP channel veteran who joined VMware earlier this month. Rauch reports to Jeff Casale, senior VP and general manager of VMware’s Americas business. Together, Gelsinger, Rauch and Casale will need to ensure VMware continues to innovate — especially as Microsoft prepares to deliver Windows Server 2012 with Hyper-V enhancements in September 2012.

Some channel partners are helping Microsoft customers migrate from VMware to Hyper-V, though VMware is still widely considered the virtualization market leader by a huge margin.

That said, the real reality check comes during VMware’s earnings call on July 23. In the meantime, The VAR Guy awaits comment from VMware about the alleged CEO change.

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