Tag Archives: Dell

Supplier Report: 6/11/2016

sn_lightening_Torsten Dettlaff

IBM scored a 10 year, $300M deal with Emirate Airlines. While they may be celebrating, HPE is hot on big blue’s AI heels with their Hexis platform.

Oracle is still dealing with last week’s lawsuit news. Investors haven’t overreacted to the possibility of false cloud sales…yet. However, the government is said to be eager to process Sarbanes-Oxley (SOX) compliance issues.


  • IBM Lands $300 Million Deal with Emirates Airline

    Under the new, enhanced-IT managed-services arrangement, IBM will “provide IT Infrastructure delivered as a service, allowing the airline to improve efficiency on its passenger support systems and functions.” The deal calls for fully managed services utilizing IBM’s mainframe, data storage, and the capability to encrypt data in near real-time.


  • IBM Shifts Spark Development to its Cloud

    IBM said it is expanding access to the data analytics development tools available on its Bluemix cloud platform, giving data scientists working in the R programming language faster access to more data along with new contributions to SparkR, SparkSQL and Apache SparkML.


Hewlett Packard Enterprise

  • HPE Discover 2016: Meg Whitman keynote
  • HPE’s Whitman Says Open to Cloud Deals With Amazon, Google

    “We may do something over time with Google and Amazon,” Whitman said Tuesday during an interview at her company’s annual event, Discover 2016, in Las Vegas. “They are not enterprise companies for the most part. They may get there. I know that is their ambition.”


  • HPE vs IBM Watson: Machine learning is ‘more than an opportunity for expensive consulting’ says software GM

    HPE has maintained an aggressive stance on the company’s proposed future in machine learning and AI at this week’s Discover 2016 conference in Las Vegas. Today, HP Software general manager Robert Youngjohn took another glove off, slyly describing IBM’s Watson as “expensive consulting with a smaller technology platform”.


  • HPE Leads Contracting Server Market As Cloud Popularity Grows

    “The real driver of global growth continues to be the hyperscale data center segment. The enterprise and small or midsize business (SMB) segments remain relatively flat as end users in these segments accommodated their increased application requirements through virtualization and considered cloud alternatives.” Total sector revenues reached £13 billion during the first quarter of 2016, of which HPE secured $3.3 billion – a quarter of the whole market and an increase of 3.3 percent.



  • Oracle’s New Legal Challenge: Of Companies And Culture

    While companies are not people, companies can have cultures. What’s at stake in all of these matters, regardless of their ultimate disposition, is what impact they might have on Oracle’s culture and how changes in that culture could potentially lead to conduct that slows the company’s growth and leads to weaker than current valuation metrics. There’s little doubt that Oracle or at least its senior executives have one of the more macho and competitive cultures in corporate America. Larry Ellison, Chairman of the Board and CTO of the company, competes in just about every way he can and against everyone that he can. Mark Hurd, co-president of Oracle, enjoys or is credited with a similar macho personality. It is part of who they are.


    The Fortune article about the “redemption” of Mark Hurd said that although Hurd didn’t always care for the niceties of making employees feel good, he always got results. A brief walk down memory lane or conversations with ex-HPE employees might challenge the accuracy of that statement. Talking of things about which I do have first-hand knowledge, Mark Hurd and his colleagues ruined HPE’s software business and destroyed a significant amount of shareholder value in the process.


  • Why Oracle’s Fiscal 4Q16 Results Will Likely Miss Expectations

    Oracle’s Software segment reported revenues of $6.4 billion in fiscal 3Q16, which was flat on a constant currency basis. Oracle’s cloud revenues, which include SaaS (software-as-a-service), PaaS (platform-as-a-service), and IaaS (infrastructure-as-a-service), grew to $735 million. The segment grew by 44% on a YoY constant currency basis.

    Oracle’s Hardware and Services segments reported revenues of $1.1 billion and $793 million, respectively. Hardware revenues fell by 2% while services revenues grew a meager 1%


Dell | EMC

  • Dell to offload $3.25 billion in junk bonds to further fund EMC buyout

    Denali Holding, the parent company of Dell, is offering $3.25bn of senior notes to finance, in part, the acquisition of EMC. Dell has already sold $20bn of investment-grade secured bonds and $5bn of institutional loans to fund the $67bn EMC takeover. Under the deal, EMC shareholders will receive $24.05 per share in cash in addition to tracking stock linked to a portion of EMC’s economic interest in the VMware business.



  • Google’s DeepMind Is Developing An AI Kill Switch To Prevent A Skynet Apocalypse

    Fortunately, some of the major players are actually also working on systems and methods to help maintain control of super-intelligent AI agents. In fact, a team of researchers at Google-owned DeepMind (the team that built Alpha Go, the machine that beat Lee Sedol handily) , along with University of Oxford scientists, are developing a proverbial kill switch of sorts for AI. Google acquired artificial intelligence startup DeepMind back in 2014 for $580 million or so, and back in the day Google CEO Eric Schmidt called it “an important bet.” Together with U. Oxford, the team has released a paper entitled “Safely Interruptible Agents.”

    The paper details the following in abstract: “Reinforcement learning agents interacting with a complex environment like the real world are unlikely to behave optimally all the time. If such an agent is operating in real-time under human supervision, now and then it may be necessary for a human operator to press the big red button to prevent the agent from continuing a harmful sequence of actions—harmful either for the agent or for the environment—and lead the agent into a safer situation.”


Photo: Torsten Dettlaff

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SourceCast: Episode 29: Getting too huuuuuuge


What happens when all of the cheap credit floating around enables companies to stop creating and just buy other companies that do innovate?  Am I being alarmist or is there a real trend on the rise?

Photo: YouTube.com

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Supplier Report: 5/21/2016

sn_dog_Stefan Stefancik

IBM announced a breakthrough in computer memory that could make RAM 50x faster with marginal cost increase.  Big Blue may have also developed a molecule that could help fight viruses.

While IBM fights viruses, Oracle is fighting Google. Oracle stated that they didn’t buy Sun just to sue Google, they also wanted to keep the company out of the hands of IBM. Oracle also told the courts that they discounted Java 97.5% to Amazon so the company would continue to use the language on their Kindle Readers (because it is so hard to compete with free).

EMC is raising at least $20B in bonds (maybe much more) while Swift was hacked (again) and is Apple the new IBM?


  • IBM says it’s designed a molecule that could fight off any human virus

    It’s exciting stuff: a macromolecule – a giant molecule made up of smaller units – has now been developed that could have the potential to block multiple types of viruses, despite the many variations involved. It’s still early days yet, but the results could lead to drugs that aren’t tricked by mutating virus strains.


  • IBM Makes Memory Breakthrough

    IBM researchers found a way to reliably store three bits of data per cell, up from previously being able to store just one bit per cell. According to Dr. eHaris Pozidis, manager of non-volatile memory research at IBM Research, Zurich, this progress is a big deal. “Reaching 3 bits per cell is a significant milestone because at this density the cost of PCM will be significantly less than DRAM and closer to flash.”

    IBM’s phase-change memory is not a commercial product at this point, and no timeline was given by the company for its potential release as such. Phase-change memory could eventually be used in mobile devices, potentially replacing both DRAM and NAND. In the data center, phase-change memory could be used to store databases, boosting performance compared to flash memory and lowering cost compared to DRAM.

    Here is the headline I was looking for (take note Fool.com):
    IBM’s new memory is over 50 times faster than flash and could soon be just as cheap

  • A professor built an AI bot to make teaching easier. Will it replace him someday?

    Named Jill Watson, the virtual “teaching assistant” drew from previous forum data to help answer many routine, technical queries about the course, such as where people could find a certain video lesson or how they could organize meet-ups with one another. The most astonishing part: Students had no idea Jill was an AI. Goel didn’t reveal that fact until the day after the class’s final exam.


  • IBM Facing Same Fate As Verizon, Union Workers In Action Again?

    The speculations started when IBM has decided to close some of its site operations. According to Patch, “IBM plans to close its operations in Somers and move everyone and everything into the Armonk campus, and the company’s plan is to consolidate in North Castle and sell the huge campus on Route 100.”

    Although the Company officials told employees about the move on Monday and how the North Castle campus will be renovated and the Somers site will be sold, according to the same post, the move has created worry and anxiety for the affected stakeholders

    If I read correctly, this is more about sub-contractors (like food services) working in these buildings. As far as I can tell, IBM doesn’t have much of a union footprint outside of that shop in NY, and that was closed up in January…

Storage [EMC | Dell | Infinidat | NetApp]

  • Dell said to get $80 billion of demand on bonds for EMC deal

    The company had received more than $80 billion of orders from investors by the time its bankers closed the books on Tuesday, according to people familiar with the transaction who asked not to be identified because they aren’t authorized to speak publicly. Dell had initially planned to raise about $16 billion. The company is weighing whether to increase the amount of debt it’s raising in the investment-grade bond market, one person with knowledge of the matter said Monday.

    Dell’s bond sale may be the largest since Anheuser-Busch InBev NV sold $46 billion of bonds in January to finance its takeover of SABMiller Plc, and is expected to launch on Tuesday, said one of the people. The offering comes on the heels of the busiest week for bond sales by blue-chip companies in the U.S and Europe since January. Top-rated issuers sold about $74 billion in the five-day period ending May 13, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

    Dell Said to Offer Premium to Lure Buyers to EMC Bond Deal

    The longest part of the offering, debt maturing in 30 years, is being marketed at a yield of 6.25 percentage points above similar-maturity Treasuries, said a person familiar with the matter, who asked not to be identified because the information is private. That’s three times more than the average spread on all U.S. corporate bonds of similar ratings and maturities, according to Bank of America Merrill Lynch data.



  • Oracle didn’t buy Sun just to sue Google but to keep it away from IBM, CEO says

    It bought Sun because it was afraid IBM was going to grab it, she said, as reported by Sarah Jeong, a reporter from Motherboard who is in court live tweeting the trial.

    Catz explained that Oracle bought Sun because so much of Oracle’s own product was based on Sun’s Java, and they were concerned about what would happen if someone else acquired Sun.


  • Oracle CEO claims it discounted Java by 97.5% to beat out Android on Amazon’s Paperwhite

    “Amazon… had used Java to create [the Kindle] reader for many years,” she said. “Then they had another product called the Kindle Fire and that one they used Android. They didn’t license Java at that time.

    “The way we look at different discounts and handle them with customers comes through an approval process that comes through me. I was made aware through that process that Amazon was going to [develop] the Kindle Fire with Android.

    “They were now considering a new product called the Paperwhite and they were considering whether to use Java for that or Android.

    “In order to compete with [Google], we ended up giving a 97.5 percent discount for the Paperwhite. Instead of what we would have historically offered them, because our competition was free, we had to offer them a cents on the dollar price.”


Hewlett Packard Enterprise | HP Inc

  • HP Inc. CEO Dion Weisler banks on 3-D printing

    We think it actually democratizes manufacturing. Manufacturing today typically happens in faraway places, and that costs a lot of inventory, warehousing costs, costs of capital all are all tied up, and this enables you to move manufacturing much closer to where your customers are. So, companies like Nike, like BMW, like Johnson & Johnson are working with us as close technology partners and figuring out how they can build innovative products where complexity is essentially free … and bring breakthrough products to market.


  • Meg Whitman gets hands-on with $100M in Hewlett Packard Enterprise startup bets

    “By adopting companies to integrate into our solution, if another one comes along that is better for our customers, we move to that one and we’re not stuck having paid $200 million or $300 million for a company,” she said. “You can’t buy them all.”

    The $100 million HPE plans to invest in startups this year is roughly the same as it did last year. That’s about one-fifth to one-quarter what the two top Silicon Valley corporate venture units — Intel Capital and GV (formerly Google Ventures) invested last year.



  • What did Google announce at 2016 I/O…
  • Apple is the new IBM

    Slowing sales of the iPhone have been driving Mr. Market’s dismay with Apple, along with a general sense that the company has become somewhat boring. Recent product launches have underwhelmed, offering iterations and optimizations of its existing portfolio rather than gadgets that create big new categories.


    Of course, Berkshire Hathaway’s stake is actually just an acknowledgement of the direction Apple has been heading in for years under CEO Tim Cook. Since taking the helm in 2011, Cook has essentially been tasked with managing the transformation of Apple from a fast-growing company seemingly immune to the law of large numbers, to a more stately—but still incredibly profitable—corporate powerhouse that consistently showers shareholders with dividends and buybacks.


  • Swift Is Hacked Again. The Bitcoin/Blockchain Fat Lady Sings.

    The significance of the second Swift failure is this. Trust-based systems, such as those upon which the current payments systems operate, are becoming more expensive to protect at a rapidly increasing rate. The horse race between hackers and firewall builders is being won by hackers in spite of the rapidly increasing spending on internet security.

    And these most recent hacks took banks’ money, not customer money. That is a game changer.


Photo: Stefan Stefancik

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Supplier Report: 4/23/2016

sn_traffic_Khara Woods

Q1 earning reports seemed to set the tone for this week’s news.  IBM had another quarter of decline as did Microsoft and EMC.

HP Inc sold off troubled assets while EMC and Dell ponder what else they can sell to pay of their debt.



  • How Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella plans to beat Amazon in the cloud

    Where our differentiation lies: The first one is hybrid. Every server product of ours has cloud enrollment rights whether that be Windows Server or SQL Server,” he said, meaning that if you buy the software, you don’t need to pay for it again to use it on Microsoft’s cloud. That saves a company money.

    And he said, the reverse is true, too, that Microsoft’s cloud Azure works particularly well with all of the company’s own server products. This is “unique to Microsoft.


  • Microsoft Misses Profit Estimates With Slowing PC Market

    Microsoft devices and PC business were a mixed bag. The division – called “More Personal Computing” — grew only 1% to $9.5 billion. While the Surface device business grew 61% (primarily from the new Surface Pro 4 and Surface Book devices), the phone revenue declined 46%. Licensing the Windows operating system to PC makers declined 2%, but Microsoft pointed out that the decline was still better than the overall PC market. 2015 was one of the worst declines in PC sales ever and 2016 doesn’t look like it’s shaping up any better:Research firm Gartner said PC shipments declined 9.6% year-over-year for the first quarter. Microsoft said that Windows 10 is now active on more than 270 million devices.


  • Microsoft touts free stuff to lure server-leaning IT pros to its cloud

    To entice them to join, Microsoft is offering up Azure credits, free online training, free tech support and extended trials of Office 365 and its BYOD product, Enterprise Mobility Suite (EMS)


Hewlett Packard Enterprise | HP Inc

  • OpenText Enters Into Definitive Agreement with HP Inc. to Acquire Certain Software Assets

    OpenText Corporation, a forerunner in enterprise information management, has announced that it has signed a definitive agreement with HP Inc. to acquire certain parts of its customer experience software and service assets. The software assets, which OpenText Corporation has acquired includes HP Media Bin, a digital asset management solution, HP TeamSite, a multichannel digital experience management platform, HP Qfiniti, a workforce optimization platform, HP Optimost, HP Explore, and HP Aurasma.


    The company, a Canada-based content management company, expects to generate between $85 million and $95 million of revenue in the first year. If those numbers are correct, OpenText could make back the cost of the acquisition in just two years.


    Interestingly these pieces weren’t included in the HPE part of the company during the split, where it would have made more sense. Perhaps that’s because HPI intended to sell these pieces all along, says Scott Liewehr, principal at Digital Clarity Group.

    “Why pair it with printers? In our view at DCG, we assumed this meant they’d be selling it off as soon as they could find a buyer. It’s been pretty public knowledge that HP has had buyer’s remorse from the Interwoven acquisition for quite some time,” Liewehr said.


    “TeamSite once held a dominant market position, but a series of poor decisions during the Autonomy era led to its demise. Staying ahead of innovative competitors requires more than just issuing press releases. But there are a number of large global enterprises still using TeamSite, and I’m sure the sales teams at Adobe, Sitecore, and Acquia are going to quickly capitalize on today’s news.”

    The news to sell the CX software to OpenText confirms the new HP Inc. had the plan to divest all along, according to Tony Byrne, founder of the Real Story Group.

    “It’s clearer HP was prepping these tools for ready divestment,” Byrne blogged today. “And today comes news that TeamSite, MediaBin, and Optimost have gone to rest at everyone’s favorite graveyard for unloved content technologies: OpenText.”

    Byrne said old Interwoven customers went through a sale to a “pathologically destructive” Autonomy, then went through an “ugly and litigious acquisition” by HP, then “calved off into near oblivion with the HP printer group.”


Storage (EMC | Dell | NetApp | Infinidat )

  • Dell looking at higher debt mountain to buy EMC

    The WSJ reports the weakish quarterly results at Intel and the “poorly received debt sale by disk-drive maker Western Digital Corp. are building expectations of higher yields for Dell’s coming debt issuance.”


  • EMC Q1 soft as orders slip

    The storage giant reported first quarter earnings of $603 million, or 14 cents a share on revenue of $5.5 billion, down 2 percent from a year ago. Non-GAAP earnings were 31 cents a share.

    Wall Street was looking for non-GAAP earnings of 33 cents a share on revenue of $5.6 billion.


  • VMware Shares Surge on Talk of Stock Buyback

    The stock repurchase is expected to take place after the EMC shareholder vote on the Dell deal, slated for May 12. By taking shares out of circulation, VMware hopes to increase their value.

    VMware plans $1.2B buyback to ease Dell takeover

    VMware’s stock surged over 9% in after-hours trading Tuesday after the company reported solid quarterly results and said it would begin a $1.2 billion stock buyback. The repurchase is set to begin after EMC shareholders vote on the Dell acquisition, an event expected six weeks after Dell files its final SEC paperwork on the transaction.

    The buyback is good news to EMC shareholders because Dell’s parent company, Denali Holding Inc., is offering them $24.05 in cash, plus a tracking stock valued at 0.111 the value of VMware’s shares. By reacquiring its stock, VMware will reduce the number of shares outstanding for sale, likely increasing their market value.



  • Oracle? Who Might Be Eating Their Porridge?

    Why might I say something so harsh? Simple really, Oracle derives 52% of its revenues from maintenance. Those revenues have operating margins of 94%. The cloud accounts for 8% of revenues and has gross margins (gross not operating) of 48%. I really do think that at scale, cloud gross margins will be higher than today, but still lower than the operating margins reaped by “selling” maintenance contracts. To the extent that Oracle is replacing a revenue stream with 94% margins with one that has margins of 75% – hopefully. Needless to say, that is not the best of trades.


    One serious challenge that Oracle faces is flexibility. Most users perceive that Oracle’s pricing is draconian and its audits… well lots of users have been known to cheat here and there in order to achieve their budgets and lots of sales people aid and abet those kinds of things. In addition to the pricing, the inflexible “Ts&Cs” there is the subject of vendor lock-in. Oracle has loads of other things they want to sell users and if users choose the Oracle cloud and then want an in-memory database, their choice is Oracle Exadata and nothing else. No rewards for guessing what that means to the prices paid by users.


  • Healthcare IT, Big Data Investments Surge in Q1

    Market researcher Mercom Capital Group reported that venture funding for healthcare IT and “digital health” soared 27 percent over the previous quarter during the first three months of this year. A total of 146 deals involving private equity and corporate venture capital generated quarterly investments totaling $1.4 billion, Mercom said. Investments totaled $1.1 billion in the previous quarter.


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Supplier Report: 4/2/2016

sn_lights_William Santos

As IBM’s Watson finally starts to make financial traction for the company, Microsoft announced their own grand design for artificial intelligence (but their message might not have been heard since they had to apologize for last week’s  AI “incident”)

IBM also purchased another new company named Bluewolf for $200M.  Like the purchase of Optevia, this company also focuses on CRM solutions. Since IBM does not have a strong CRM tool (they have been pushing SAP), they are trying to get in on the configuration of other supplier’s CRM solutions – like Microsoft and SalesForce.

Dell officially sold off Perot Systems to NTT for $3B while Oracle continues to… troll.



  • Is Microsoft shifting its focus again or losing it?

    Sure, Microsoft talked about Windows and Xbox. Those key brands were an important part of the proceedings. But the biggest announcements – the ones that laid out Microsoft’s plan for the next year – were in the area of “intelligence.” Microsoft wants to build the world’s first large-scale, multiple-platform AI service. And that mission has far-reaching implications.


  • Microsoft is reportedly mulling Yahoo acquisition

    This isn’t the first time that Microsoft has shown an interest in acquiring Yahoo. Former CEO Steve Ballmer tried unsuccessfully to buy Yahoo for about $45bn in 2008. Microsoft could now buy the company for a much smaller figure. Re/codesuggested that Yahoo’s board would accept $10bn for the core internet business.


Storage ( Dell | EMC |Infinidat |NetApp | Pure)

Hewlett Packard Enterprise | HP Inc


  • Google Says It Doesn’t Owe Oracle More Than $8 Billion in Damages

    The lawsuit concerns whether Google should be allowed to use parts of Oracle’s Java software under fair use. The more than $8.8 billion that Oracle is claiming was estimated from profits that Google has made from Android, which integrates Java into its operating system.

    Another quote:

    The multi-billion-dollar damages Oracle is seeking are worth even more than it cost the company to buy Sun Microsystems, which developed Java.


  • Oracle Corporation Is Crushing the Cloud Space
    I keep hearing how Oracle is crushing it in the cloud space, but I haven’t see the list of companies jumping over to do business with them.  Do you think they are really growing at this pace or is some sales re-classification occurring?

    So, now Oracle’s the one that’s crushing. They saw over 40% growth in their cloud-based revenue, gross margins popped from 43% to 52% in one quarter, and now they’ve got $1.5 billion in recurring revenue from customers from the cloud. So, I think that Oracle came out better from this and has learned a couple things from Salesforce over the last 16, 17 years.



Photo: William Santos

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