In Conversation with VMware CEO: 5 Key Takeaways

Talkin' Cloud met with VMware CEO Pat Gelsinger last week in Toronto. Here's what he had to say, broken down in 5 key points.

Nicole Henderson, Content Director

June 13, 2016

3 Min Read
VMware CEO Pat Gelsinger
VMware CEO Pat Gelsinger

With EMC shareholders ready to vote on the Dell-EMC merger next month, VMware CEO Pat Gelsinger was in Toronto meeting with Canadian partners and media last week to provide an update on the company and his vision for the future of cloud computing.

Over the hour-long conversation, Talkin’ Cloud came out with 5 key takeaways on the cloud landscape, how channel partners can be successful, and how being wary of change isn’t necessarily a bad thing.

To read the full interview, go to Talkin’ Cloud sister site The WHIR.

1. Vendors, Partners Must Adapt – or Get Left Behind

The technology landscape is changing at a rapid pace – and vendors, partners, everyone in the ecosystem has to navigate through those changes to be successful.

“None is as significant as the period we are in right now,” Gelsinger said. “You have consumer-driven technologies, the shift from on-premise to off-premise, the disruptive effects of mobile and mobile cloud, change of business models from perpetual and capitalized to subscription, all of these are creating such violent shifts that everybody, including us, needs to navigate to the other side of that.”

For channel partners, the dramatic shift from selling and supporting boxes to cloud-delivered services could leave some behind.

“Some will make it through the transition and some won’t. Some will need to migrate in other different directions for their business models in the future,” Gelsinger said.

2.  Cloud Market is More Diverse than You May Think

While Gelsinger acknowledges the important role that mega cloud providers play in enterprise cloud environments (he referenced a VMware customer, one of the top three car manufacturers in Germany that uses AWS, Microsoft Azure, and VMware) he said that there is “enormous diversity that will occur in this environment” that doesn’t often get addressed.

This includes regional differences – in certain regions Amazon Web Services doesn’t have much of a presence, and this is because regional cloud providers are strong.

“You know Amazon has minimal presence inside of Japan. Why? Because Fujitsu and NTT are strong. In China you’ve got Baidu, Alibaba, Tencent and Kingsoft as the key providers there.”

“I’m not trying to dismiss how big and exciting the mega-clouds are, but to say ‘there’s going to be four global cloud providers’ is dead wrong,” Gelsinger said.

3.  More Industry Consolidation Ahead

Gelsinger said that the Dell-EMC merger is just the beginning of a lot of consolidation in the industry.

“There will be continued industry consolidation,” Gelsinger said. “Too many storage companies, too many switch companies, too many server companies as the industry goes through [transformation].”

“Obviously in this space there will be enormous scale, supply-chain efficiencies that will result,” he said. “Customers will be big winners in all of that.”

4.  Multi-Clouds is the Reality

Gelsinger said that he sees a future where every enterprise uses multiple clouds. He sees VMware being critical in helping customers navigate that multi-cloud world.

“That’s exactly what VMware is trying to be. Let me tell you how we can help you as the customer take advantage of those cloud resources,” Gelsinger said.

5.  Embrace Change, but Watch for Hype

As the technology industry changes and new technologies come to the forefront, it is important not to be blinded by the hype. Case in point: containers.

“Containers are early in the hype cycle. Nobody makes money on containers today,” Gelsinger said. “There are no viable business models on containers today. It is a bubbling cauldron of open source, free form innovation that is occurring today.”

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About the Author(s)

Nicole Henderson

Content Director, Informa

Nicole Henderson is a content director at Informa, contributing to Channel Futures, The WHIR, and ITPro. 

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