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HPE NonStop Corner

One partner’s perspective



hpe corner sep 19

With the end of a quarter there is always plenty of news coming from HPE and as part of the presentations being given by HPE executives there are numerous statements of interest to everyone in the NonStop community. Amongst these statements there is plenty of information to fuel even more speculation although, when it comes to NonStop, the NonStop product managers are doing a good job steering us away from potential controversies. Having said that, it’s very clear that NonStop will be a candidate to participate in some of the major initiatives that fall under the general heading of “everything as a service” and “consumption any way you want!”

On August 27, 2019 HPE CEO Antonio Neri gave an earnings call to financial analysts. In that call, Neri made a couple of important observations that shouldn’t be lost on any member of the NonStop community:

“In Q3, we continue to demonstrate disciplined execution, which expanded profitability across the Company. In a more uneven market, we improved both gross and operating margins, delivered strong non-GAAP earnings per share and generated a record level of year-to-date free cash flow. These results reflect our momentum as we take deliberate steps to shift our portfolio to higher-value, software-defined offering delivered as a service.  

 “Turning to Hybrid IT, we delivered our highest operating margins since Q1 fiscal year ’17. Our operating margin of 12.7% was up 260 basis points year-over-year. Revenue of $5.5 billion was down 3% year-over-year when adjusted for Tier 1 in China.”

 Two observations: the shift in portfolio to … software-defined offerings delivered as a service and the accelerated shift away from being a supplier to Tier 1 Cloud Service Providers where margins have been paper thin. All good especially in the context of improved margins, higher profitability and yes, record levels of free cash flow. This is what drives the HPE innovation engine as HPE continues to be able to invest to remain competitive. One interesting additional comment by Neri is worth noting but at this time without further comment:

 “We announced the expansion of our partnership with VMware to offer VMware Cloud Foundation as a service. Through the integration of HPE GreenLake and HPE Synergy with VMware Cloud Foundation, our two companies will allow mutual customers to keep all their applications, tools and data in place, while achieving the benefits of cloud and compostable infrastructure.”

This additional comment by Neri was subject to a separate post to LinkedIn by Phil Davis, President of Hybrid IT, HPE (and the source for the photo atop this article):

“Cloud has fundamentally changed customers’ expectations around IT. They seek an experience that allows them to act with agility, and dynamically compose resources based on business demands.

 “VMware and HPE have a long history of co-innovation, and today we are enabling customers to bring the cloud experience to their data center. Our vision is built on a single platform that can span across multiple clouds and puts companies in a better position to take advantage of new business opportunities without the management complexity and cost.”

A majority of shareholders at Cray voted in favor of the deal with HPE and according to Neri:

“As you would remember, we announced the Cray acquisition early in Q3 and now expect to close the Cray transaction by the end of Q4 fiscal year 2019 earlier than originally planned.

“High Performance Computing (HPC) continues to be a strategic focus area for HPE, and we have a clear differentiation that is even further strengthened by Cray.”

As for the other acquisition previously announced, that of MapR then Neri sounded particularly bullish when he told financial analysts that:

“We have been building our HPE AI portfolio over the last few years. With MapR’s enterprise grade file system and cloud native storage, we have a complete portfolio of products to drive AI and analytics applications.

“The technology is also highly complementary to BlueData’s container platform strategy. HPE plans to support existing customer deployments along with ongoing renewals, and we are pleased to welcome MapR customers and partners and the MapR team to the HPE family.”

I still have reservations about this acquisition but perhaps in time we will see additional moves being taken by HPE when it comes to Big Data, AI, ML and all that is involved in Deep Learning and Analytics.

What this translates to for those invested in HPE stock was subject to a brief Q & A session on the financial network CNBC and is worth watching: HP Enterprise is trying to embrace the ‘hybrid cloud’: Analyst … bottom line? If you are invested in HPE then it is a good stock to hold on to!

The key takeaway for the NonStop community is that much of this dovetails nicely with where we see HPE leading NonStop development – NonStop is now software and NonStop can be consumed as a service. NonStop too can easily play nicely with HPE Synergy and in so doing, may be positioned for even greater participation in key HPE initiatives all referenced above. But this will be in due course naturally as there has been no confirmation from HPE concerning NonStop, apart from adding to the traditional NonStop offerings the alternative to run virtually.

And with that, perhaps it’s a good lead in as we look ahead to the NonStop Technical Boot Camp (TBC). What will be revealed and what further announcements will be forthcoming from our NonStop team? I guess we will just have to wait – and I am looking forward to seeing many of you in Burlingame, California, as November rolls around!

All opinions and observations expressed here are those of Pyalla Technologies, LLC, and unless otherwise expressly identified, are not provided by HPE employees.