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Social Media Round-Up [November and into January, 2020]

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First we had Xerox making headlines with the bid for HP Inc. (HPQ). Then we had The Register reporting that HPE is going on the warpath (attacking AWS over vendor lock-in) and then there is an update coming from investment advisors that perhaps it’s time to rethink HPE and to begin buying up its stock. Finally, one of the better known HPE watches proposed on Twitter that Google “will buy an enterprise company like HPE.

Some of this is pure speculation; I recognize it as I have been accused of doing something similar. But as they say in the media business there is no such thing as bad news; just news! However, what we are witnessing is another transformation under way at HPE that is only just beginning to develop traction with investors and users alike – this is not the traditional HPE of long ago. As one observer noted it’s time to separate HPE from the group of old-school legacy vendors we continue to see referenced with little respect for what HPE is doing today.

When it comes to investors, in case you missed it there was good news coming out of Deutsche Bank as it “resumed coverage of HPE with a Buy rating. Investors in many respects are just like a mob of sheep – get one of them to change course and they all do so. It will be interesting to watch what develops here. The key phrase here – and harking back to the above note that HPE isn’t part of the old school mob, but rather is carving out a new future, “The core revenue declines are ‘likely overstated.’”

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If you aren’t following the UK digital publication, The Register, then you are missing out on a lot of fun reporting. If there is something scandalous to report or a vendor struggling to transform then this publication will be all over them and the social media responses can be just as much fun to read as well. In this case, however, there is a more serious tone evident in the reporting of HPE CEO Antonio Neri telling the paper that there is as much lock-in with cloud as there ever was with traditional systems – but something in passing tweaked my imagination:

“Google is trying to become hybrid but they have some technology challenges in terms of scale because, you know, the way they architected the cloud was for Google, and if you need a small cloud, like say in a closet, Google does not scale at the rack level or the server level,” Neri tells us.

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Neri had a lot more to say on GreenLake Central (just announced) and the promotion by HPE of a model based on a portal and an ops console designed to facilitate greater engagement by user departments themselves. According to Neri, “HPE is passing ‘back control’ to the department, and then ‘giving them the choice to either be in the running (things) side of IT or be in the innovation side of IT.” He also took advantage of the opportunity The Register afforded him to further promote the push by HPE to the Edge. Neri also reiterated that when it comes to 2020, “HPE has told investors to expect ‘sustainable, profitable growth.’” You have to wonder now whether the folks at Deutsche Bank read this update as well!

But it is speculation on future direction of Google in terms of addressing the needs of the enterprise that had tongues wagging on LinkedIn and Twitter. It all started with posts by @CTOAdvisor, Keith Townsend and it started with a (likely) unpopular opinion: “Google will buy an enterprise IT company like HPE!” Possible? After an exchange with the @CTOAdvisor it was clear that the majority of industry observers simply didn’t comprehend the moves being made by HPE having discounted anything HPE has to say even as they continue to relegate HPE to that dreaded category, old school (legacy) vendors. Nothing could be further from the truth but as we all know, this may or may not be in the same category as Xerox buying HP Inc., but then again, there will be investors left scratching their collective heads all the same!

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All of which leaves to me to quote one more item from social media and it had to do with another statement by Neri following HPE Discover, Munich. “Will there be more investments in services and software businesses?” To which Neri responded, “Correct, absolutely spot on… as I think about inorganic, which is always on the premises of return on invested capital, and bringing in IP and talent, definitely it’s more software and more services oriented.” No there is never truly any bad news, just news and this past month there has been plenty of news to talk about and it leaves us here at NonStop Insider pondering what all might transpire in 2020.

Thank you.