Nutanix CEO Ramaswami: Partner Interest Spiking After Broadcom-VMware Deal

Nutanix has a new deal with Dell, but Dell has other storage and HCI options for its customers.

Dave Raffo, MSP News Editor

May 23, 2024

5 Slides

NUTANIX NEXT — Nutanix CEO Rajiv Ramaswami says the hyperconverged infrastructure (HCI) vendor is taking an opportunistic approach to court partners who might be confused about Broadcom’s policies for Nutanix rival VMware.

During an exclusive interview at Nutanix Next in Barcelona, Ramaswami told Channel Futures his first meeting at Next was with a channel partner community.

“We certainly have seen a lot more interest from partners wanting to sign up to become Nutanix partners,” the Nutanix CEO said. “Things are starting to become clearer for them. Broadcom is taking the top 2,000 VMware customers direct, so that’s definitely not good for the channel partners who are involved with those customers. From a channel partner perspective, we have reacted to that. We have a Surge Program (launched Feb. 5) with increased reward levels for partners bringing in new customers to us. We've also increased the profitability on the front end and the back end through our Elevate program.”

Nutanix CEO on Options for VMware Customers

He said unhappy VMware customers have three main options — Nutanix, containers and public cloud.

“All of those require work. But I would say Nutanix requires the least amount of work because we can actually run like-for-like workloads,” he said. “We can migrate a VMware workload and run it on Nutanix, and we’ve been doing this for years. It's probably the least complex option for customers.

Related:Nutanix AHV Adopters Tell Their Migration Tales

“Containerization does you to do some work on the application," he added. "You have to invest developer resources on that. It's not necessarily the most cost-effective solution. And public cloud migrations for existing applications are not easy.”

Nutanix also added a big vendor partner this week when it landed Dell. Nutanix now has partnerships with Cisco, Dell, HPE and Lenovo among server vendors.

The partnership enables Dell to sell Nutanix software on Dell PowerEdge servers, and Nutanix software will support Dell PowerFlex as external storage. Ramaswami said the impact of the deal depends on how much Dell gets behind Nutanix in the field.

“It's hard to say,” said the Nutanix CEO, when asked how important the deal is. “It depends a lot on how Dell takes it to market and executes on it related to all the other things that they're doing. It's certainly a net-positive for us, no doubt about it. They clearly have a variety of options that they offer to their customers, and of course, they sell their own three-tier storage. That’s a big part of their business. That’s what they’re really focused on.

Related:Nutanix Takes Aim at VMware, Gen AI at Next Conference

“They offer us, they offer VMware, they offer Red Hat, they offer Microsoft,' the CEO continued. "We're glad to be included in that portfolio of options; they didn’t have us in there before.”

See our slideshow above for more from Ramaswami and Nutanix Next 2024.

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About the Author(s)

Dave Raffo

MSP News Editor, Channel Futures

Dave Raffo has written about IT for more than two decades, focusing mainly on data storage, data center infrastructure and public cloud. He was a news editor and editorial director at TechTarget’s storage group for 13 years, news editor for storage-centric Byte and Switch, and a research analyst for Evaluator Group. In addition to covering news and writing in-depth features and columns, Dave has moderated panels at tech conferences. While at TechTarget, Raffo Dave won several American Society of Business Publication Editors (ASBPE) awards for writing and editing, including for column writing.

Raffo covers the managed services industry for Channel Futures. His reporting beat includes the MSPs, key vendors and tech suppliers with managed services programs, platform providers, distributors and all key players in this sector of the market. Dave also works closely on the Channel Futures MSP 501 and our live events.

Raffo has also worked for United Press International, EdTech magazine, Windows Magazine and Data Center Intelligence Group (DCIG) in reporting, editing and research analyst roles.

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