Tag Archives: SalesForce

Supplier Report: 11/19/2016


IT suppliers are looking to get more open. Microsoft not only joined Elon Musk’s OpenAI, they also join the Linux Foundation. The Linux Foundation… remember when Ballmer called linux a cancer?

But even as Microsoft and Google promote their open technology, they are targeting SaaS as the main driver for future growth. While the infrastructure may be open, their SaaS offerings will be decidedly less so. Smaller companies like Slack are promoting a more connected world, but will Microsoft shut that business model down?

And who will be the big winner in this open world of closed ecosystems?  Probably Amazon. They seem to be winning most of the hosting business (ala the $400M agreement with SalesForce).


  • Samsung is buying Harman for $8B to further its connected car push

    Terms of the deal will see Samsung pay $112.00 per share. That’s a healthy premium on Harman’s current share price of $87.65, and it gives the deal a total value of approximately $8 billion. The transaction is expected to close by mid-2017, at which time Harman will become a standalone subsidiary of Samsung. Dinesh Paliwal will continue to lead the firm as its Chairman, President and CEO, both Harman and Samsung said.


  • Verizon buys LQD WiFi to expand its IoT strategy into “smart cities”

    Verizon today has made another acquisition to build out its IoT business: the carrier has purchased LQD WiFi, a developer of outdoor interactive displays that provide WiFi connectivity along with news, emergency alerts and community information. They also act as sensors collecting crowd, weather and other data.


  • Ex-Autonomy CFO Indicted For Alleged Fraud In H.P. Acquisition

    A federal grand jury in San Francisco has indicted the former chief financial officer of a British software maker on charges he engaged in fraud to artificially increase the company’s share price and make it attractive to Hewlett-Packard.

    The grand jury indicted former Autonomy CFO Sushovan Hussain on Thursday on wire fraud and conspiracy charges.

    Hussain’s attorney, John Keker, said his client defrauded no one and acted at all times with the highest standards of honesty and competence.

    I honestly did not expect anything like this to happen.

  • Is Netflix Disney’s next big buy and is Reed Hastings its next CEO?

    And, despite its rosy Q3 numbers, Netflix ultimately needs a buyer.  As I recently wrote, Netflix faces fundamental long-term existential business challenges of its own.  Its singular content-focused subscription-based business model can’t compete with the complex multi-faceted, multi revenue-streamed business models of AT&T, Amazon, YouTube (Google), Verizon, Apple and Amazon.


  • HPE Eyeing Purchase of SimpliVity (HPE)

    Hewlett Packard Enterprise Co. (HPE), is rumored to have its eye on leading hyperconvergence infrastructure (HCI) vendor SimpliVity. The Westborough, Mass.-based niche market leader is estimated to go for $3.8 billion to $3.9 billion, reports the Register. The rumored price stands at quadruple the company’s valuation in its latest series of funding in March 2015.


  • AOL lays off 500 employees as Verizon-Yahoo acquisition looms

    The cuts, which Armstrong said would consolidate recent AOL acquisitions, presage the type of staffing changes that could affect Yahoo in early 2017 as Verizon closes its $4.8 billion acquisition of the Silicon Valley icon.


Artificial Intelligence

  • Microsoft teams up with Elon Musk’s OpenAI project (thanks JD!)

    OpenAI will also make Microsoft Azure its preferred cloud platform, in part because of its existing support for AI workloads with the help of Azure Batch and Azure Machine Learning, as well as Microsoft’s work on its recently rebranded Cognitive Toolkit. Microsoft also offers developers access to a high-powered GPU-centric virtual machine for these kind of machine learning workloads. These N-Series machines are still in beta, but OpenAI has been an early adopter of them and Microsoft  says they will become generally available in December.


  • MIT students and others teaching IBM Watson about cybersecurity

    Several universities involved with that project began having students train the system within the past several weeks, explained IBM Watson’s Jeb Linton, chief security architect.

    “We’re ramping up from the phase where we have a little over 30 people selecting documents and annotating documents, to the phase where we’re… a much larger group by bringing in these college students,” Linton explained.

    “It’s very much an interactive process. You put the machine-learning process into Watson and see what you get from it. I wouldn’t say anything has really surprised us so far,” Linton said. “We added in a level of complexity a few months ago that was a little less than optimal, and we trimmed some of that complexity back out.”


  • IBM’s Watson would do a better job at being a bank teller than most current staff

    Watson can take all of a bank’s rules and regulations and data about customer’s requirements and behaviours and provide an intelligent interface for customers to get things done with the confidence that Watson understood what the customer wanted and also understood what the bank could provide to satisfy those requirements.

    Not surprisingly however, banks worldwide are not investing in innovations like cognitive computing. Innovation is often lumped in the general IT budget and often forms a tiny part of that spend. By viewing it in the same category as buying computers or complying with regulatory requirements, the overall value and benefit is much harder to see.



  • Microsoft, Amazon turn to wind energy to power cloud data centers

    Microsoft is also pushing for more renewable energy sources. Referring to the new agreement, Microsoft president and chief legal officer Brad Smith said “these agreements represent progress toward our goal of improving the energy mix at our data centers.”

    Microsoft now runs one data center entirely on wind power

    Microsoft has a stated goal of using 50 percent renewable energy in its data centers across the U.S. by 2018, and it just took a big step forward in that plan, purchasing additional 237 megawatts of wind energy capacity.

    In the process, this helps allow its Cheyenne, Wyoming, data center run entirely on wind power and brings the company’s total wind capacity to 500 megawatts across the U.S.


  • Google’s cloud GPU undercuts, outperforms AWS, Microsoft

    Google’s plan to stand apart from the competition is to be more granular. Amazon’s machine-learning-oriented GPU instances are rented by the hour and come in a discrete instance type. Google, however, is planning to allow users to “attach up to 8 GPU dies to any non-shared-core machine,” regardless of instance type.

    Even more critical, Google’s GPU pricing will follow its existing model: by the minute, same as Google’s VMs. This isn’t about consistency alone; it also reflects how GPU-powered machine learning is actually used. If a machine learning application employs only GPUs for training, it makes sense to be able to toggle off the GPU when it’s not needed instead of changing instance types.



  • Dell EMC unveils new additions to its all-flash portfolio

    The deployment of the new Data Domain Cloud Tier software within Data Domain, according to Dell EMC, increases the total volume of data that can be managed through a single appliance by 200 percent, with a maximum logical capacity of 150PB. Data Domain Cloud Tier establishes Data Domain as the only protection storage to natively tier de-duplicated data to public, private, or hybrid clouds for long-term retention, including Dell EMC Elastic Cloud Storage and Virtustream Storage Cloud.


  • NetApp tops 2Q profit forecasts

    On a per-share basis, the Sunnyvale, California-based company said it had net income of 38 cents. Earnings, adjusted for one-time gains and costs, were 60 cents per share.

    The results exceeded Wall Street expectations. The average estimate of 15 analysts surveyed by Zacks Investment Research was for earnings of 54 cents per share.


  • Infinidat’s energy efficient offerings

    Below is an Infographic that takes a bottoms up look at INFINIDAT’s InfiniBox and how its underlying technology drives more efficiency than any other array on the market today. InfiniBox keeps your data center footprint from sprawling out of control and keeps your power costs low by taking only 2kW/TB to operate.



  • In five years, SaaS will be the cloud that matters

    Over time, more “infrastructure” services will become software services. Because once it’s SaaS, the boundaries between infrastructure, platform, and software don’t matter to the IT customer—it’s merely a service. That’s a mental shift from IT’s on-premises view, where the boundaries matter in how IT delivers the ultimate service. Those boundaries will still exist for the provider, but won’t be IT’s concern.


  • Why the next great SaaS company will look nothing like Salesforce

    Conversely, once a startup’s product is being used every day like Slack, it may start keeping more information within it and over time wean people off whatever they were using before (Outlook, Sharepoint, etc).

    The game-changer could well be artificial intelligence: if AI software could extract signal from the unstructured product feedback in Intercom or the sales forecasting information in Clari, the data in those systems could become more valuable than the limited fields captured in today’s systems of record.


  • Is Google crashing the Microsoft open source party?

    So Microsoft’s move is a giant retraction of that sentiment, one which it has been trying to undo for the past couple of years with various announcements regarding a more open approach to Linux and the open source community.

    Unlike Microsoft, Google has already established itself as having a pedigree in open source and so its joining of the .NET Foundation isn’t a huge surprise.

    Google is already an active contributor and joining the Technical Steering Group just expands its participation.

    The Alphabet subsidiary has already begun labeling itself as the ‘Open Cloud’ and Microsoft has revealed that it needs to be a bit more willing to work with the open source community because of its growing popularity.



  • Salesforce’s Benioff thinks Microsoft is up to its old tricks again

    “The message was ‘Why don’t you meet with Scott Guthrie? He runs Azure and would really like to walk you through the details of your business because maybe we could get Salesforce to run on Azure’… and I’m like OK, and it was clear also that he was someone not in our business, he was running Azure.”

    Benioff notes a few weeks later Guthrie was suddenly promoted to also run Microsoft’s CRM business, which is a direct competitor to Salesforce and not long after Salesforce was disinvited from a Microsoft customer event without prior notice.


  • Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff is done cozying up to Microsoft — now he’s BFFs with Amazon

    Instead, Benioff has turned to Amazon this year, striking a number of major deals. In May, Salesforce announced a $400 million deal to use AWS, while Amazon rolled out Salesforce’s software company-wide. Salesforce said Amazon added even more Salesforce services this quarter, during the call with investors.


  • You Can Thank Twitter For Trump, According To Salesforce CEO

    I think it’s a great company, I think it’s a great CEO. I think it has a huge vision and has a unique position in the world. As evidenced by this election, I think it’s more important than ever… Without Twitter, I don’t think you would have President-elect Trump. I mean, that’s reality. He said it very well. He said, “I have a beautiful Twitter account.”


  • Hewlett Packard Enterprise to outsource global IT team to CSC borg

    “To ensure that all three companies are successful going forward, HPE intends to partner with ES/CSC to receive IT services through an IT Services Agreement that includes IT infrastructure and application development/support. This will result in a majority of our IT family moving to ES/CSC, which will become a leading provider of independent IT services in the world,” Spradley and Nefkens stated in the memo.

    The HPE contract is in addition to outsourced service provision for HP Inc, and Micro Focus, which by next summer will be the new home of HPE’s Software business.

    I believe this is called “eating your own dogfood”

Photo: Álvaro Serrano

Tagged , , , , , ,

Supplier Report: 11/12/2016


IBM continues their fight against cancer.  This week they announced they are investigating why certain cancers are resistant to certain treatments and what leads to re-occurrence.  As Watson fights cancer, it is also trying to figure out how to get installed into every electronic device you own.

A mass of people greater than the size of the entire US population ditched Internet Explorer and Edge this year in favor of alternatives like Chrome, Firefox, and Safari. While Microsoft ponders how to get those users back, former Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer told the press why he and Bill Gates are no longer friends (hint: its because of mobile).


  • Oracle Set to Complete $9.3 Billion Deal to Buy NetSuite

    The deal has been complicated by opposition from NetSuite’s largest institutional shareholder, T. Rowe Price Group Inc. The investment firm, which held 14.4 million NetSuite shares or 17.7% of the company’s outstanding stock as of Nov. 1, said in September that it wouldn’t tender its shares in support of the deal. It cited the conflict of interest created by the substantial NetSuite stockholdings by Oracle executive chairman Larry Ellison and his family, saying the $109 a share price was too low.


  • How LinkedIn Drove a Wedge Between Microsoft and Salesforce

    The two companies stayed close and by the spring of 2015 their conversations evolved into another deal: Microsoft would acquire Salesforce. In May 2015, CNBC reported that the talks had fallen apart because Salesforce was demanding around $70 billion, about $22 billion more than the company’s market value at the time.

    Several people briefed on the talks said that account was accurate, though two of them said another factor was that Mr. Benioff thought Microsoft was not respectful enough of his accomplishments in building Salesforce. It was unclear whether Mr. Benioff would be happy in a subordinate role at Microsoft after building Salesforce from the ground up, and it was equally hard to imagine a successful Salesforce without him.


    For the next several months, Microsoft and Salesforce privately made competing offers for LinkedIn, each sweetening their bids as the competition increased. Bill Gates, Microsoft’s co-founder and a board member, wooed Reid Hoffman, the LinkedIn founder and chairman, according to the LinkedIn filing. Salesforce code-named its LinkedIn effort Project Burgundy.


  • Why Google really spent $625 million on a company generating $92 million in revenue

    It’s not like Google needed an API platform,” this person said. “But they did need revenue. They did need executive talent, they did need logos.”

    Apigee has an experienced enterprise salesforce who have landed a long list of enterprise customers such as Allstate, AT&T, Burberry, First Data, Kaiser Permanente, Walgreens etc. All told, Apigee has more than 335 customers, it says.

    More importantly, Apigee is a big AWS customer. Apigee’s cloud service is built on Amazon’s Web Service and a number of its customers also host their API apps on AWS as well. Once Google moves Apigee to Google’s cloud, it has a compelling inside sales track to convince 335 more enterprise customers to do the same.


Artificial Intelligence

  • How AI (Artificial Intelligence) Creates A Better Customer Service Experience

    Some may think that Watson would eventually be able to replace a call center rep. No doubt that Watson can deliver a better self-service solution. But, what if rather than replacing the employee, it supported the employee. This would allow for the company to keep the human touch with its customers, but also provide quick and accurate support. This, according to Ginni Rometty, CEO of IBM, is when AI, or artificial intelligence, takes on a new meaning. This is when AI becomes augmented intelligence.


  • IBM’s Watson to use genomic data to defeat drug-resistant cancers

    While a growing number of treatments can hold cancers in check for months or years, most cancers eventually recur, according to the Broad Institute researchers. This is in part because tumors acquire mutations that make them drug resistant.

    That cancer drug resistance is a major cause of nearly 600,000 annual deaths in the U.S. alone, according to Eric Lander, the founding director of the Broad Institute. While scientists have discovered the cause of drug resistance in a small number of cancer cases, which has led to the development of new, successful treatments, most cases are not fully understood.

    The new five-year, $50 million genome project will study thousands of drug resistant tumors and draw on Watson’s computational and machine learning methods to help researchers understand how cancers become resistant to therapies.

    Additional information on their partners:
    IBM Watson Health partners with MIT, Harvard on 5-year cancer initiative

    IBM Watson Health and the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard have launched a five-year $50 million research project to delve into cancer drug resistance.

    Researchers will study thousands of drug-resistant tumors and draw on Watson’s computational and machine learning methods to understand how cancers become resistant to therapies.


  • IBM’s Watson AI could soon be in devices from PCs to robots, thanks to Project Intu

    “Intu is an architecture that enables Watson services in devices that perceive by vision, audition, olfaction, sonar, infrared energy, temperature, and vibration. Intu-enabled devices express themselves and interact with their environments, other devices, and people through speakers, actuators, gestures, scent emitters, lights, navigation, and more,” IBM explains on its GitHub page.

    The project is in search of all manner of developers, whether they’re hacking together Raspberry Pi with various sensors to create robots, or businesses exploring bots for customer service.



  • Greening the cloud: How Amazon, Microsoft and Google are pursuing the goal of renewable power

    AWS, along with its rivals, is trying to cut the pollution its data centers emit by building wind and solar farms. Most recently, the cloud leader announced plans to built a 189-megawatt (MW) wind farm in Hardin County, Ohio, that will generate 530,000 megawatt hours of power per year starting in December 2017. That’s enough to power about 50,000 homes U.S. homes for a year.


  • Hewlett Packard Emphasizes Importance, Potential of Blockchain, Decentralization

    However, Dare notes that irrefutability and decentralization are two of the most important features of the Blockchain network as they enable participants in the network to send payments to each other without mediators. They could also allow banks and major financial institutions to conduct labor-saving operations.

    Currently, a massive number of banks and financial establishments are gearing towards the development and implementation of the Blockchain technology. But, even multi-billion dollar institutions like Accenture have proposed the concept of editable Blockchain.


  • Why IBM Is Betting Big on Blockchain

    Another example is a project involving Visa and DocuSign that would allow car buyers to configure a lease and drive away with a new car immediately, without the time-consuming process of filling out mountains of paperwork. La’Zooz, a start-up in Israel, is using blockchain in a ride-sharing app that allows drivers and customers to connect directly, without the need for a middleman ride-sharing company.

    Making supply chains more efficient is another area where blockchain could potentially shine. IBM estimates that blockchain could generate more than $100 billion of efficiencies annually if applied to global supply chains — a staggering number. Both Toyota and the U.S. Postal Service are currently looking into using blockchain for exactly that purpose.



  • Ex-Microsoft CEO Ballmer says his push on smartphones strained relationship with Bill Gates

    “There was a fundamental disagreement about how important it was to be in the hardware business,” Ballmer said. “I had pushed Surface. The board had been a little — little reluctant in supporting it. And then things came to a climax around what to do about the phone business.”

    Microsoft entered the market in 2012 with the Surface RT, a tablet that sold poorly and required Microsoft to take a $900 million charge to write down the value of inventory. Now, the rejiggered Surface business is profitable and generated more than $4 billion in sales for the most recent year.



  • 331 million people ditched Internet Explorer and Edge this year

    Microsoft is trying to keep its users, no doubt, by trying to convince everyone that Edge is much better at battery management. It introduced features like Cortana support, pinned tabs and more, but none of those functions seem to be worth sticking around for. Chrome, a notorious system hog, wasn’t the main beneficiary this time, though. Instead, Computerworld said that Mozilla’s Firefox saw a user increase of about 2 percentage points, gathering a large chunk of the 2.7 percent of the user’s bailing from Microsoft’s ship. The pace doesn’t seem to be slowing, either, with a decline predicted to continue into the next several months according to Computerworld.


  • Is IBM Cool Again?

    Bots are one feature of Slack’s platform, and the first step of the partnership will see Watson used to power an improved version of Slackbot, Slack’s customer-service bot. Eventually, developers will be able to use various Watson services when building bots and other tools for the platform. Since Watson is a machine learning system, it has the capability to become more accurate and useful over time.

    In terms of revenue, this partnership with Slack is likely to be a drop in the bucket for IBM. But it’s notable because it’s an example of a tech start-up choosing IBM for — well, anything. My guess is that IBM rarely comes up in the conversation at small tech companies like Slack. That was certainly true a few years ago, and it’s probably still true today. That Slack turned to IBM is a fairly significant development, and it could spur more deals and further expand Watson’s presence.


  • Salesforce users: if you buy it, you integrate it

    That’s the finding of a recent survey of 300 Salesforce users by Jitterbit, an integration vendor. While the vendor obviously has a horse in this race, the results underscore the urgency of application and data integration between Salesforce and on-premises systems. Yet, respondents are divided as to whom should take responsibility for the effort. Forty-four percent said that integration projects were the responsibility of the non-IT users adopting the solution. Another 43 percent said the IT department is expected to own the responsibility for integrating these solutions.

    The result: integration chaos from the cloud. Integrating information from other business applications with Salesforce is crucial to gaining a 360-degree view of the customer, yet users often don’t have a clear integration strategy in place.



  • CEO lured from Amazon AWS with millions in cash, stock options

    Selipsky, who joined Tableau in September, got a $1 million signing bonus, $500,000 in base salary and up to $500,000 in annual performance bonuses. He was also granted $14 million in restricted class A stock with an option to purchase 75,000 shares.


  • IBM moved jobs to India: Trump

    “IBM laid off 500 workers in Minneapolis and moved their jobs to India and other countries. A Trump administration will stop the jobs from leaving America, and we will stop the jobs from leaving Minnesota,” Trump said in his speech yesterday in Minneapolis, as part of efforts to woo voters in Minnesota state which has been a Democrat stronghold.


  • Turbonomic Grabs Former HP COO Bill Veghte As New Top Exec

    Former Hewlett-Packard executive Bill Veghte has joined Turbonomic, an application performance management developer and Hewlett Packard Enterprise strategic technology partner, as its full-time executive chairman.

    Turbonomic, which until August was known as VMTurbo, Thursday unveiled the appointment along with the news that the privately held company has closed its 25th consecutive quarter of revenue growth.


Photo: Alphacolor 13

Tagged , , , , ,

Supplier Report: 10/22/2016


Big IT firms are clearly focused on the cloud, but as these companies grow out their infrastructure, we will focus on the differences between the cloud providers and try to find sweet spots.

SalesForce had some very sensitive M&A information leaked.  Will Pega Systems and Tableau get bought or was this some kind of trick to drive up stock prices?

And are the days of the Chinese factory workers numbered?


  • Wipro To Buy Salesforce Superstar Appirio for $500 Million

    Business process services goliath Wipro says it will spend half a billion dollars to purchase cloud services powerhouse Appirio so it can improve its market share and position around Salesforce and Workday.

    The $500 million all-cash acquisition is expected to close by the end of the year, according to a statement. Wipro did not immediately respond to a request for additional comment.


  • Salesforce.Com, Inc To Buy Tableau Software Inc (NYSE:DATA) Shortly After Declining Twitter Inc Buyout

    Tableau Software Inc. explored a potential sale in recent months, according to people familiar with the matter, as technology companies scramble for partners amid a wave of mergers in the industry.

    The Seattle company was working on a potential sale as recently as this summer before the effort stalled, the people said.

    The Wall Street Journal reported on the document in a front-page article Wednesday that pushed up shares of Tableau as much as 7%, giving it a market value of nearly $4 billion.


  • HP Enterprise services merger with CSC could ‘mean more churn’ for company’s federal contractors

    “The combination of these two companies will create a new company with billions in global revenue, including a sizable U.S. federal government business,” it added. “However, the government sector of the new, yet unnamed company may be impacted by the cost take-outs planned by the merger and the distraction of yet another major company reorganization.”


  • Salesforce’s M&A Target List Had 14 Names, But Not Twitter Inc

    Citing an internal presentation allegedly obtained from former Secretary of State and Salesforce Director Colin Powell the WSJ lists 14 companies, including Marketo, Adobe Systems, Hubspot, PegaSystems, Demandware, Tableau, and LinkedIn, as possible candidates.

    According to the presentation, Box and Zendesk were mentioned as well, but their chief executives had less interest. The presentation, which was marked “draft and confidential” and titled “M&A Target Review,” is a 60-slide document which identified 14 possible acquisition targets.


Artificial Intelligence

  • DeepMind’s differentiable neural computer helps you navigate the subway with its memory

    DeepMind’s technique merges notions of memory with more traditional neural networks using a “controller.” The controller saves information by either storing it in a new location or overwriting a previously occupied location. Throughout this process, an association between the information is formed via the timeline of when new data was written in.

    The controller uses that same chronology along with the actual content of what has been saved to retrieve information. The framework created is navigable and proves itself effective for drawing insights from graph data structures.


  • Fighting Diabetes with Watson: Medtronic and IBM Health
  • No More Humans: Foxconn Deploys 40,000 Robots In China

    Dai said currently Foxconn can produce 10,000 robots annually. In the future, those robots are all potential replacements for human labor. For the Kunshan factory alone, Foxconn has cut 60,000 employees.

    Prior to this, labor costs in mainland China were lower than robots; therefore, Foxconn maintained nearly one million workers. However, with the increase of labor costs and the younger generation’s lack of interest in production line work, many companies have launched huge investments in automation.

    What I predicted in this post is starting to come true

  • IBM Watson Will Run On IBM and IBM Alone

    You’ve got to give UBS analyst Steven Milunovich major props. During IBM’s earnings call on Monday, he asked whether IBM Watson, the company’s golden child, will run on rival Amazon Web Services—and he was promptly shot down. “No. Watson runs on our cloud, and our technology will run on IBM’s cloud,” IBM chief financial officer Martin Schroeter responded tersely.




  • IBM and other giants to reform servers and make them faster

    Servers current circuitry is not fast enough, and International Business Machines Corp. has promised to speed the data transfer in servers up to ten times. The group hopes more companies will be part of the team to improve servers speed. Standard microprocessors are getting faster, but their performance is usually delayed because they need to fetch data from nearby memory chips, graphic chips or other elements used to handle certain tasks.


  • Lenovo’s attack plan against Dell EMC? A partnership with Nimble Storage

    The Chinese company, which has what it calls its “dual” headquarters in Morrisville and its server division in Research Triangle Park, just signed a deal with Nimble that allows it to sell Nimble’s all-flash array technology, as well as to use the firm’s predictive analytics capabilities.


    And it’s a segment of the business that has seen major change, particularly as its relationship with longtime partner EMC severed completely when rival technology firm Dell acquired it. Since Dell announced the buy last year, Lenovo has been working to fill the gap. McRae says it’s been a systematic effort.



  • IBM Shares Fall Despite Higher-Than-Expected Sales

    Revenue from those areas, which the company calls “strategic imperatives,” rose 16% to $8 billion in the third quarter. Cloud revenue jumped 44% compared with a 30% rise in the second quarter, it said. However, shares of IBM, which reported its 18th straight quarter of declining revenue, were down 3.1% at $150.60 in after-market trading.


  • HP: We’ll Put Laid-Off Workers on Contract

    In light of massive job cuts, HP Inc. has indicated to Business Insider that it may offer affected workers the opportunity to continue their roles as employees at contract agencies. The company stated, “HP has a strong record of success in placing employees in outsourced roles to mitigate the headcount number.” HP has a track record of shifting employees to positions as contract workers from before its 2015 split with Hewlett Packard Enterprise Co.


  • HP Enterprise announces more layoffs as cloud business struggles

    The layoffs in the Stackato may indicate HPE is further retreating from the ultra-competitive cloud market amidst tough competition from AWS and Microsoft. Last year, HPE pulled the plug on its Helion hybrid cloud offering. In August, Bill Hilf, HPE’s current cloud leader,announced he was leaving the company to “pursue other opportunities.”


  • Microsoft employees love Satya Nadella a lot more than they did Steve Ballmer

    Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella looks especially good, by the report’s reckoning. At the close of 2013, the final days of former chief executive Steve Ballmer’s reign, Microsoft only gave a 51% rating for CEO approval. Nadella took the reigns in February 2014, and the CEO approval rating hit 88% by the end of 2015.


  • Broadcom, Harris Vet Bill Miller Joins NetApp as CIO

    Bill Miller, former senior vice president and chief information officer at Broadcom, has joined NetApp in the same role of CIO and will be responsible for both the company’s information technology organization and ongoing transformation initiatives.


Photo: Rob Roy

Tagged , , , , , ,

Supplier Report: 10/15/2016


Large IT companies are running into some M&A trouble. Verizon wants a discount on their Yahoo acquisition, Saleforce is trying to block the Microsoft’s purchase of Linkedin, and Oracle is struggling to make their purchase of Netsuite a reality.

Cloud was a big topic this week – Google has officially rebranded their cloud offerings as “Google Cloud” due to customer confusion (good move), IBM CEO Ginni Rometty explains her company’s position on blockchain (and discusses if AI can replace her), and VMWare is available on AWS.

HP Inc is cutting 4,000 jobs but former EMC CEO Joe Tucci found one!


Artificial Intelligence

  • Could Watson Replace Ginni Rometty? What She’s Not Saying About AI, Jobs & Disruption

    IBM has bet it’s future on AI, cloud computing and data/information/knowledge management. All three areas are about reducing costs and improving productivity by decreasing human labor.Cloud computing, for example, could easily be described as the technology delivery model that kills software developers, applications support professionals and data center managers. There’s a straight line from the number of jobs IBM eliminates and its stock price. If Watsonbecomes a friendly assistant that charges for its pedantic services, IBM will fail. But if Watson enables large-scale labor replacement, IBM’s stock will rise.


  • Artificial intelligence positioned to be a game-changer (follow link for the video)

    One of the technologies just hatched is called Gabriel. It uses Google Glass to gather data about your surroundings and advises you how to react. It’s like an angel on your shoulder whispering advice or instructions. In this case trying to direct us how to win a game of ping pong but the possibilities go beyond bragging rights.



  • IBM wins $62 million contract to run private cloud pilot at Army’s Redstone Arsenal

    IBM won the work as a task order under the Army’s Private Cloud II indefinite delivery/indefinite quantity contract. The $62 million award includes one base year and four option years, during which the company will build, then own and operate a data center on Army property at Redstone Arsenal, near Huntsville, Alabama.


  • VMware and AWS Announce New Hybrid Cloud Service, “VMware Cloud on AWS”

    Amazon and VMWare today announced a strategic alliance to build and deliver a seamlessly integrated hybrid offering that will give customers the full software-defined data center (SDDC) experience from the leader in the private cloud, running on the world’s most popular, trusted, and robust public cloud. VMware Cloud™ on AWS will enable customers to run applications across VMware vSphere®-based private, public, and hybrid cloud environments. Delivered, sold, and supported by VMware as an on-demand, elastically scalable service, VMware Cloud on AWS will allow VMware customers to use their existing VMware software and tools to leverage AWS’s global footprint and breadth of services, including storage, databases, analytics, and more


  • IBM CEO Rometty’s position on blockchain

    Good to hear IBM’s direct stance on the platform and what their vision is
  • IBM’s Cleversafe storage platform is becoming a cloud service

    Cleversafe’s innovation in object storage was to combine encryption with erasure coding and geographic dispersal of data. SecureSlice encrypts unstructured data, stores the key with the data, and then breaks up that data and puts it on several different storage nodes. In IBM Cloud Object Storage, those nodes can be in data centers spread across an entire continent.


  • Google’s Diane Greene providing a status on Google’s cloud platform:
  • IBM says its new Cloud Object Storage allows easily moving and splitting data

    The service is built on technology dubbed SecureSlice, which combines encryption, erasure coding and geographic dispersal of data. Erasure coding is a form of data protection. IBM acquired the SecureSlice technology when it bought Cleversafe last year for $1.3 billion. The technology automatically encrypts each segment of data before it’s erasure-coded and dispersed, and the data can only be reassembled where it was originally received.


  • Amazon cloud boss Andy Jassy fires back at Oracle’s Larry Ellison, says stats were ‘made up’

    Instead, Jassy pointed to what analysts are saying about AWS. For example, Gartner said in its Magic Quadrant report last year that AWS is 10-times bigger than its next 14 competitors combined, while putting it at the top of the list against this year.

    Deutsche Bank also wrote in a recent note, “Oracle talked up its ‘next-gen’ infrastructure as a cheaper rival to AWS, but we don’t believe it will be competitive anytime soon.



  • IBM, Google, others to unveil new open interface to take on Intel

    The new standard, called Open Coherent Accelerator Processor Interface (OpenCAPI), is an open forum to provide a high bandwidth, low latency open interface design specification.

    The open interface will help corporate and cloud data centers to speed up big data, machine learning, analytics and other emerging workloads.

    The consortium plans to make the OpenCAPI specification available to the public before the end of the year and expects servers and related products based on the new standard in the second half of 2017, it said in a statement.


  • Dell shows off new logo…

    This looks like something Silicon Valley would do to make fun of an IT company.


  • Joe Tucci Named Chairman of Bridge Growth Partners

    Bridge Growth Partners, LLC, a sector-focused, growth-oriented private equity firm, today announced that Joseph M. Tucci, former Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of EMC Corporation and former Chairman of VMWare, has been named Chairman of the firm. Tucci has served on the firm’s Investment Committee and Advisory Board since Bridge Growth Partners was established in late 2013.


  • Hewlett Packard Enterprise will have approximately $9 billion in net cash at the end of FY17

    Hewlett Packard Enterprise is expected to host analyst meeting event on October 18, and according to Mr. Hosseini, the management will surely divulge information regarding the high level of cash in the company’s balance sheet. Furthermore, the analyst expects insight regarding growth initiatives and the strategy used by the company in order to promote secular growth trends in key areas of business.


  • HP Inc will cut up to 4,000 jobs by 2019

    The world’s second-largest PC supplier has struggled in a dwindling market, and hopes the cutbacks will save the company between $200 to $300 million annually by 2020.

    However, HP will also incur an estimated $350 million to $500 million in restructuring costs.

    The announcement comes during a global decline in PC sales, dropping 5.7% in the third quarter compared to last year according to a report by Gartner. This represents the longest period of decline in the history of the PC industry.


Photo: Tao Wen

Tagged , , , , ,

Supplier Report: 10/8/2016


Nobody wants to buy Twitter, but that isn’t stopping SalesForce, Google, and Microsoft with moving forward with their long term plans.

Internet of Things is trending this week as Microsoft is quietly shutting down their fitness band division, but will they buy FitBit (and what would they do with all of that data)? IBM is dropping $200M on a new IoT HQ in Germany.

There were also a few interesting team-ups this week: VMWare and Amazon on some potential VMWare options on AWS and IBM and AT&T deepening their relationship via cloud services.


  • Plat.One acquisition marks start of $2B IoT investment plan for SAP

    SAP has bought IoT software developer Plat.One, marking the start of a plan to invest US$2 billion in the internet of things over the next five years.

    Some of those billions will be spent on the creation of IoT development labs around the world, SAP said Wednesday. It already has plans for such labs in Berlin, Johannesburg, Munich, Palo Alto, Shanghai and São Leopoldo in Brazil.

    The company is also rolling out a series of “jump-start” and “accelerator” IoT software packages for particular industries, to help them monitor and control equipment.


  • Salesforce snaps up Krux for $700M on eve of Dreamforce

    On the eve of Dreamforce, his company’s annual developers shindig, Salesforce agreed on Monday to acquire Krux, a marketing-data start-up, for $700 million in stock and cash. Krux, which already has a partnership with Salesforce, is expected to bolster Salesforce’s ability to better identify and serve its cloud-software customers.


  • Salesforce Investors Could Derail a Potential Deal for Twitter

    During a CNBC interview on Wednesday with Jim Cramer, Benioff neither confirmed nor denied Salesforce’s interest in Twitter, but didn’t exactly sound as if a deal is certain. “We have to look at everything, we’re going to pass on most things,” he said. Salesforce, which was down over 7% at one point, pared its losses a little following Benioff’s remarks.

    The fact that Twitter is already often used as a marketing and customer service vehicle by many companies — including, presumably, many Salesforce clients — probably isn’t lost on Benioff. Salesforce likely sees value in integrating Twitter with its Marketing Cloud (online marketing automation) and Service Cloud (customer service and enterprise collaboration) software. It also could leverage data on Twitter activity to give clients a better understanding of their customers, as well as engage with them more effectively.

    Salesforce Should Leave This Bird in the Bush

    A Wall Street Journal report late Tuesday makes clear that Salesforce is still very interested. CEO Marc Benioff has reportedly been talking up Twitter behind closed doors—going so far as to describe the troubled microblogging service an “unpolished gem” at one gathering. Salesforce shares fell another 5% as a result. In all, the prospect of buying Twitter has erased nearly $5 billion in Salesforce’s market value.


  • Should Microsoft Buy Fitbit?

    Fitbit isn’t for sale, but that doesn’t mean it can’t be bought. There wasn’t a “For Sale” sign hanging on Skype, Yammer, and more recently LinkedIn when Microsoft cracked open its huge pocketbook to snap up niche leaders. This makes Fitbit a logical target for a company with a history of multi-billion dollar purchases and a market leader that is attainable. Fitbit’s present enterprise value of $2.5 billion would be a light bite for Microsoft, even with a reasonable premium on top of that.


  • Oracle Threatens to End NetSuite Deal

    On Friday, Oracle announced that it extended the expiration data of its tender offer for NetSuite to Nov. 4, having already extended the date to Oct. 6 last month “to facilitate the completion of outstanding antitrust reviews.” In September, Oracle received the final antitrust clearance needed, from the U.S. Department of Justice.


Artificial Intelligence



  • The Job Cuts Begin: Dell Confirms Layoffs

    “Most cuts are overlap, none strategic and/or not part of the new Dell EMC program. To me very normal and a must once the two firms begin to integrate, gel, morph and then execute as a new technology powerhouse with a focused team that [has] the ‘right’ skill sets to address this new world,” Shepard wrote.


  • Why Red Hat, Inc. Gained 11% in September

    The open-source software specialist saw second-quarter earnings rise 17% year over year, based on 17% stronger sales. Both of these figures were above Wall Street’s consensus estimates. Application development tools led the way with 33% higher sales, and Red Hat customers’ adoption of long-term support subscriptions is pacing ahead of the basic revenue growth.



  • Oracle Will Keep Posting Growth in the SaaS Space

    As we discussed earlier in this series, Microsoft (MSFT) emerged as the leader of overall enterprise SaaS (software-as-a-service) space, and Salesforce (CRM) continues to rule the CRM (customer relationship management) space. It was the Oracle’s dominance in ERP (enterprise resource planning), the segment that grew the most in the SaaS space, that led it to register the highest growth in the SaaS space in 2Q16.



  • IBM Brand Value Collapses 19%

    The failure of IBM’s turnaround continues to smother the business. IBM’s shares are off 17% in the past two years, against a 9% improvement in the S&P 500. IBM’s revenue in 2011 was $106.9 billion. In 2015, the figure fell to $81.7 billion.


  • SAS CEO Dr Jim Goodnight on the power of big data, literacy and philanthropy

    “We spend 25 per cent of our revenues on R and D every year, which is more than any other major software company,” says Goodnight, who was a statistics professor at the North Caroline State University when he started working on software for agriculture.


  • Coupa up 87% in software IPO

    But they’re still not profitable. For the six months ending in July, Coupa lost $24.3 million, which compares to a loss of $25.1 million in the same period last year. Yet revenue is growing, up to $53.2 million from $31.6 million in the same time frames.

    CEO Rob Bernshteyn tells us they are more focused on their margins than profitability right now. “For every dollar we burned, we created well over a dollar in recurring revenue,” he told TechCrunch. He says he’s looking to “build this business for the long-term.”


Tagged , , , , , ,