HP shakes up cloud execs

HP hopes a leadership shake up can readjust its market position

Last week was a busy one for HP, and specifically its cloud.

Multiple media outlets reported that the company’s cloud chief – Marten Mickos – will no longer lead cloud efforts at HP. Mickos will stay on, but the company has three new executives heading up its Helion cloud platform.

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Mickos came over to HP with the acquisition of Eucalyptus, an open source private cloud platform that has high fidelity with Amazon Web Services APIs. According to an internal memo cited by multiple media outlets, Mickos stepped down and will instead focus on what he says is his passion: “Identifying disruptive companies that transform the technology landscape."

Last year HP committed to spending $1B in cloud computing. Does that mean Mickos will be on the lookout for other companies to acquire? There were also rumors of an HP-EMC merger. Could Mickos be exploring that?

Talkin’ Cloud reports a trifecta of executives are taking over Mickos’ former role:

bill hilf hp

HP's Bill Hilf 

“Senior-level HP executives Kerry Bailey, Bill Hilf and Mark Interrante will handle HP's day-to-day cloud operations. Bailey will lead HP's sales, Hilf will assume product strategy responsibilities and Interrante will head engineering. All three executives will report to HP Chief Technology Officer Martin Fink.”

The executive shakeup wasn’t the only piece of news from HP last week. The company reported earnings with revenues that were down, but not as much as analyst had expected. So, I guess that’s good?

HP also announced two fairly significant customer wins this week: UK Bank Deutsche Bank signed a 10-year deal to work with HP and cloud provider Intralinks announced their platform will run on Helion.

Last year Network World editor in chief John Dix and I sat down with Hilf to discuss HP’s cloud, the OpenStack market and competitive dynamics in the IaaS market. At the time we were both impressed with the company’s offering. But HP still seems to be stuck in a sort of second-tier status in the IaaS cloud world, behind companies like AWS, Microsoft and Google, and rubbing elbows with other cloud providers attempting to make it into the upper-echelon of this market, like VMware, Rackspace, EMC, Verizon and many others.

Perhaps this shakeup will shake up HP’s positioning in the market.

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