Tag Archives: Dell

Supplier Report: 6/18/2016

sn_lion_Samuel Scrimshaw

The big news this week is Microsoft purchasing LinkedIn.  It has been less than a week since the news broke and I am already sick of the press guessing about “Microsoft’s grand plan”.

The Dell/EMC merger is starting to show stress marks with EMC employees.  EMC is already starting to reduce staff to prepare for the acquisition and now EMC employees are starting a “pop up union” in Boston to eliminate non-compete-clauses.

IBM is having some tax trouble in India, labor issues in Canada, and real estate problems in Buffalo (maybe). But they are getting in the self-driving car game.

IBM

  • IBM Watson takes on diabetes

    IBM has made two announcements around research projects. The first is a joint project between IBM Research and Maccabi Healthcare. This will take six years of research from IBM, including a predictive model it released last year, and combine that with Maccabi Healthcare’s anonymised diabetic patient database which covers 20% of the Israeli population.

    The goal is to create a predictive model to help with the early detection of diabetic retinopathy which leads to blindness. By using the two bodies of research the project teams want to deliver personalised healthcare plans for sufferers. This will include predicting the need for eye tests and how often they should take place based on the severity of the diabetes.

    The second research project is with the American Diabetes Association. IBM is to help the ADA ingest its extensive repository of data into IBM Watson. The initial target is to build a diabetes advisor for both patients and healthcare workers based on the biggest set of data in the world.

    http://www.enterprisetimes.co.uk/2016/06/13/ibm-watson-takes-diabetes/

  • India casts tax net over IBM again

    India has been embroiled in tax rows over the last few years with Vodafone, Nokia, Shell and Cairn Energy, all of which face billions of dollars in back tax over issues ranging from capital gains to transfer pricing.

    With foreign investors accusing the government of a lack of clarity in its tax enforcement , the Income Tax Department appears to be delaying action against IBM India. With this latest claim, IBM India could be liable for more than $1 billion in back taxes, including penalties and interest.

    http://asia.nikkei.com/Politics-Economy/Policy-Politics/India-casts-tax-net-over-IBM-again

  • IBM says Buffalo plans unchanged

    IBM Corp. denied Tuesday that it is freezing its investment and hiring at the data analytics and technology services center in Buffalo while federal prosecutors continue their investigation into the state’s Buffalo Billion economic development program. The New York Post reported Tuesday that the company had decided to “cease all new investments and additional hiring’’ until the investigation is completed. “The story is untrue,” an IBM spokesman said.

    http://www.buffalonews.com/business/ibm-says-buffalo-plans-unchanged-20160614

  • Victory for IBM employees in Bromont

    In a historic judgment made public yesterday, Judge François P. Duprat of the Superior Court of Quebec ordered IBM Canada to pay more than $ 23 million to a group of 451 employees and former employees of its plant inBromont, Quebec.  Judge Duprat ruled that IBM could not go back on a promise made to employees to pay them a bridge benefit upon early retirement, benefit they were about to become eligible to receive.

    http://www.newswire.ca/news-releases/victory-for-ibm-employees-in-bromont-582980761.html

  • Watson is getting in on the self-driving game…

    Olli, which can carry up to 12 passengers, taps into four Watson APIs (Speech to Text, Natural Language Classifier, Entity Extraction and Text to Speech) to interact with its riders. It can answer questions like “Can I bring my children on board?” and respond to basic operational commands like, “Take me to the closest Mexican restaurant.” Olli can also give vehicle diagnostics, answering questions like, “Why are you stopping?”

    http://www.zdnet.com/article/ibm-local-motors-debut-olli-the-first-watson-powered-self-driving-vehicle/

  • IBM and The Weather Company announce Deep Thunder

    The Weather Company is already able to analyse over 100 terabytes of third-party data daily and its regional model are currently being used by businesses around the world to get accurate guidance on the weather and weather related events. The new models that will form Deep Thunder were all designed by IBM and were created with business in mind. They especially excel at hyper local forecasts at a 0.2 to 1.2 mile resolution.

    http://www.itproportal.com/2016/06/16/ibm-weather-company-announce-deep-thunder/

Microsoft

  • Why Microsoft Is Spending $26 Billion on LinkedIn

    The core idea is to draw on more data to boost productivity and make both LinkedIn and Microsoft more essential to the workday. But whenever personal data is the lifeblood of a business plan, privacy concerns emerge. Nadella said that “nothing will get connected or linked without users opting in” but also extolled the potential of applying machine learning to user data in order to generate more recruitment leads and help sales forces drum up more business. Bosses will also have a clearer view of who employees are talking to and how they’re spending their time.

    http://time.com/4367134/microsoft-linkedin-buy/
    Microsoft’s Massive LinkedIn Deal Is a Sign of Something Dangerous

    The deal highlights one crucial way in which our market system is no longer serving the real economy. Why would a cash-rich firm like Microsoft go into debt and cause ratings agency Moody’s to put it on a possible downgrade list? Because it will save around $9 billion in U.S. taxes by doing so. Debt is tax deductible, and borrowing will save Microsoft money relative to bringing overseas cash back home and paying the U.S. corporate tax rate on it.

    http://time.com/4368047/microsoft-linkedin-deal-merger-debt/
    Why Microsoft Wanted LinkedIn

    That’s where LinkedIn comes in. Announcing the acquisition, Nadella made it clear that he’s buying the social-networking company because he believes it can improve Microsoft’s existing cloud-based services. Microsoft wants LinkedIn for its rich, detailed data about companies’ workers, which it hopes to bake into Microsoft services like Outlook and Skype, to make those services more engaging. One slide in the companies’ presentation to investors shows a woman using Microsoft’s digital assistant, Cortana, ahead of a meeting with someone named Sam. Cortana tells her what it knows about Sam, based partly on his LinkedIn profile: “You and Sam both went to the University of Washington and you both know Cindy Smith. Good news, the Huskies won last night’s game. Do you want to look at Sam’s profile?” As he showed the slide, Nadella told investors, “Just imagine you’re walking into a meeting, and Cortana now wakes up and tells you about the people you’re meeting for the first time, but tells you all the things that you want to know before walking into meeting someone.”

    http://www.newyorker.com/business/currency/why-microsoft-wanted-linkedin
    Salesforce.com Lost LinkedIn Bid to Microsoft

    Salesforce.com’s offer price isn’t known, but Brent Thill, an analyst at UBS Group, said purchasing LinkedIn would have been a stretch for the company, which makes web-based software for salespeople. The price Microsoft paid is nearly half of Salesforce.com’s $55.9 billion market capitalization.

    http://www.wsj.com/articles/salesforce-com-lost-linkedin-bid-to-microsoft-1466134606

Storage: Dell | EMC | Infinidat

  • What to Look for When Dell-EMC Closes

    While the two companies have widely varied and mostly complimentary products and services, there are likely to be a lot of redundancies that will lead to layoffs. EMC has already announced it is laying off people as part of a restructuring plan ahead of the deal. Dell has sold off and IPOed major assets it acquired over the past decade, such as Perot Systems and SecureWorks.

    But as the companies continue to align their businesses, it is likely we’ll see more positions eliminated. Securities filings by EMC indicate layoffs are ongoing and will continue through the end of 2016.

    http://austininno.streetwise.co/2016/06/10/dell-emc-acquisition-what-to-watch-as-deal-closes/

  • Why EMC Employees Are Forming a ‘Pop-Up’ Union to Take Down Noncompetes

    Johnson said the group formed this spring because employees may have extra leverage with Dell’s pending acquisition of EMC and some of the snags that it has hit. The group is gathering signatures from current and ex-employees on its website, and it’s expected to vote to certify itself with the National Labor Relations Board later this summer.

    http://bostinno.streetwise.co/2016/06/16/emc-forming-pop-up-union-to-fight-noncompetes/

Other

  • Microsoft’s big LinkedIn purchase puts the pressure on Google to respond

    Google will have to answer — particularly since one product Microsoft said LinkedIn will assist with is Cortana, its artificial intelligence-powered personal assistant. AI is a linchpin feature that Google is using with its enterprise software sales pitch. Google’s AI is widely considered best in the industry; but with LinkedIn’s data, Microsoft could have a critical edge in its offering that trumps Google.

    Why does Google HAVE to answer? There is an excellent chance that MS overpaid for LinkedIn, should google rush in and overpay for another company to further complicate the holdings they currently have?
    http://www.recode.net/2016/6/13/11922406/microsoft-linkedin-google-respond

  • Why Twitter could be attractive to an enterprise tech vendor

    Nevertheless, Twitter could be valuable to a few companies due to its unique characteristics. Twitter’s ability to gauge public sentiment, become a breaking news venue and broadcast information easily could make it the eyes and ears for an artificial intelligence system or an analytics suite. Simply put, data matters.

    sn_twitter-data-licensing
    http://www.zdnet.com/article/why-twitter-could-be-attractive-to-enterprise-tech-vendor/

  • Everybody wants to buy SalesForce… including Oracle?

    As of the most recent quarter, Oracle had about $51 billion in cash, which is good because Salesforce isn’t cheap. Its shares trade around $82, up 4% for the year to date compared with a 1.2% rise in the S&P 500. It has a market cap and enterprise value of around $55 billion through Monday’s closing price. But buying Salesforce would bring Oracle $2 billion in cash.

    Both companies offer enterprise software for sales and other functions, and Oracle is racing to catch Salesforce in with its subscription-based software. At the same time, both companies would complement each other’s weakness.

    https://www.thestreet.com/story/13606330/1/is-salesforce-com-oracle-s-next-target-buy-it-now.htm
    Larry Ellison takes cloud fight to Jeff Bezos

    Still, Ellison says Oracle has a “fighting chance” to be the first software-as-a-service (SaaS) company to $10 billion in revenue, which would mean beating Salesforce. Oracle co-CEO Safra Catz said on the call that based on a 64 percent increase in deferred revenue and 38 percent jump in billings, “we are now growing faster than both Salesforce and Workday in every way.”

    Thill, who has a buy rating on Oracle shares, isn’t buying the argument. Salesforce, the leader in SaaS, is expected to generate revenue this year of well over $8 billion and says it has a contract backlog of $11 billion.

    http://www.cnbc.com/2016/06/16/larry-ellison-takes-cloud-fight-to-jeff-bezos.html

  • Oracle misses 4Q profit forecasts

    On a per-share basis, the Redwood City, California-based company said it had net income of 66 cents. Earnings, adjusted for one-time gains and costs, were 81 cents per share.

    The results fell short of Wall Street expectations. The average estimate of 15 analysts surveyed by Zacks Investment Research was for earnings of 82 cents per share.

    http://finance.yahoo.com/news/oracle-misses-4q-profit-forecasts-200841529.html

Photo: Charles Forerunner

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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

  • 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.

    http://www.investopedia.com/stock-analysis/060716/ibm-lands-300-million-deal-emirates-airline-ibm.aspx

  • 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.

    http://www.enterprisetech.com/2016/06/07/ibm-shifts-spark-development-cloud/

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.”

    http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2016-06-07/hpe-s-whitman-says-open-to-cloud-deals-with-amazon-google

  • 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”.

    http://www.computing.co.uk/ctg/news/2460943/hpe-vs-ibm-watson-machine-learning-is-more-than-an-opportunity-for-expensive-consulting-says-software-gm

  • 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.

    http://www.techweekeurope.co.uk/cloud/gartner-server-market-cloud-growth-193198

Oracle

  • 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.

    Also:

    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.

    http://seekingalpha.com/article/3981044-oracles-new-legal-challenge-companies-culture

  • 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%

    sn_oracle-saas-and-paas
    http://marketrealist.com/2016/06/why-oracles-fiscal-4q16-results-will-likely-miss-expectations/

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.

    http://www.cbronline.com/news/verticals/tmt/dell-to-offload-325-billion-in-junk-bonds-to-further-fund-emc-buyout-4918338

Other

  • 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.”

    http://hothardware.com/news/google-ai-kill-switch-could-prevent-skynet-takeover

Photo: Torsten Dettlaff

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SourceCast: Episode 29: Getting too huuuuuuge

sn_thedonald

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

  • 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.

    http://www.sciencealert.com/researchers-have-designed-a-molecule-that-could-fight-off-any-virus

  • 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.

    http://www.fool.com/investing/general/2016/05/19/instant-analysis-ibm-makes-memory-breakthrough.aspx
    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
    http://www.sciencealert.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.

    http://qz.com/688048/a-professor-built-an-ai-bot-to-make-teaching-easier-will-it-replace-him-someday/

  • 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

    http://www.jobsnhire.com/articles/43040/20160518/ibm-facing-same-fate-verizon-union-workers-action-again.htm
    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…
    http://www.computerworld.com/article/3019552/it-industry/ibm-union-calls-it-quits.html

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.

    http://gulfnews.com/business/sectors/technology/dell-said-to-get-80-billion-of-demand-on-bonds-for-emc-deal-1.1829746
    Also:
    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.

    http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2016-05-16/dell-said-to-offer-premium-to-lure-buyers-to-emc-bond-offering

Oracle

  • 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.

    http://www.businessinsider.com/oracle-bought-sun-because-of-ibm-not-google-2016-5

  • 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.”

    http://techcrunch.com/2016/05/17/oracle-ceo-claims-it-discounted-java-by-97-5-to-beat-out-android-on-amazons-paperwhite/

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.

    http://www.marketplace.org/2016/05/17/tech/hp-inc-ceo-dion-weisler-banks-3d-printing

  • 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.

    http://upstart.bizjournals.com/money/loot/2016/05/18/meg-whitman-gets-hands-on-with-100m-in-hewlett.html

Other

  • 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.

    Also:

    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.

    http://qz.com/685284/apple-is-the-new-ibm/

  • 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.

    http://seekingalpha.com/article/3975082-swift-hacked-bitcoin-blockchain-fat-lady-sings

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.

IBM

Microsoft

  • 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.

    http://www.businessinsider.com/how-microsoft-will-beat-amazon-in-the-cloud-2016-4

  • 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.

    http://www.forbes.com/sites/aarontilley/2016/04/21/microsoft-misses-profit-estimates-with-slowing-pc-market/#5039969e1b42

  • 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)

    http://www.techrepublic.com/article/microsoft-touts-free-stuff-to-lure-server-leaning-it-pros-to-its-cloud/

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.

    http://www.martechadvisor.com/news/opentext-enters-into-definitive-agreement-with-hp-inc-to-acquire-certain-software-assets/
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    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.

    http://www.ciodive.com/news/opentext-buys-bundle-of-hp-content-management-products-for-170m/417654/
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    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.

    http://techcrunch.com/2016/04/18/opentext-acquires-hp-customer-experience-content-management-for-170-million/
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    “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.”

    http://www.cmswire.com/customer-experience/hp-sells-cx-assets-to-opentext-for-170m/

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.”

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    http://www.theregister.co.uk/2016/04/22/dell_looking_at_higher_debt_mountain_to_buy_emc/

  • 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.

    http://www.zdnet.com/article/emc-q1-soft-as-orders-slip/

  • 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.

    http://fortune.com/2016/04/20/vmware-shares-surge-on-talk-of-stock-buyback/
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    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.

    http://www.marketwatch.com/story/vmware-plans-12b-buyback-to-ease-dell-takeover-2016-04-19

Oracle

  • 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.

    http://seekingalpha.com/article/3965635-oracle-might-eating-porridge
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    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.

Other

  • 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.

    http://www.datanami.com/2016/04/20/healthcare-big-data-investments-surge-q1/

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