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HPE partners urged to tackle the 'Super Six' market opportunities

At the HPE Global Partner Summit 2018, the company described six short- and long-term market opportunities it plans to capitalize on with it partners.

LAS VEGAS -- At the HPE Global Partner Summit 2018, Hewlett Packard Enterprise laid out six market opportunities it wants to jointly pursue with channel partners.

HPE executives said half of the "Super Six" opportunities are ripe for HPE partners to immediately capture and half involve more long-term strategies and investments. The short-term opportunities include Gen10 servers, blade servers and all-flash arrays, HPE said. The forward-looking opportunities center on everything as a service, software-defined infrastructure and the intelligent edge.

"What the Super Six represents are six huge transitions that we see happening right now in the marketplace," said Phil Davis, chief sales officer at HPE, at this week's Summit.

He said HPE has been busy transforming its portfolio to align with Super Six opportunities, which he said collectively makes up a $65 billion market. Additionally, the company has received clear signals from its customer base the Super Six represents areas to double-down on. "The accelerated growth rates that we are seeing in these areas absolutely prove [the Super Six] is where our customers see ... value," he said.

Short-term opportunities for HPE partners

Davis described HPE's immediate Super Six opportunities as having about a two- or three-year window that partners can exploit if they act fast.

Gen10 transitions: Customer refreshes to HPE's Gen10 servers amount to about a $20 billion opportunity, Davis said. He noted that HPE partners that lead with HPE OneView, the vendor's converged-infrastructure management platform, have "a great opportunity to refresh our own, as well as competitive environments."

OneView "delivers a substantially differentiated experience for our customers in terms of ease of deployment of infrastructure in terms of automation of routine tasks, in terms of being able to take costs out," he said. He noted that HPE recently shipped its one millionth OneView license.

Blades: Davis asserted that HPE essentially invented the server blade category and has led in it for every quarter.

It is critical that we lead with everything as a service [and] we lead with a consumption model with HPE GreenLake because it is what customers want.
Phil Davischief sales officer, HPE

The second strongest player in the market, Cisco, with its Unified Computing System (UCS) technology, is decreasing its focus on the blades market, he said. "If you watch what is going on with [Cisco's] investments, it really seems like they are pulling back," Davis said. "We haven't seen the same pace of innovation for them and it looks like they are doubling-down on security and other places. It looks like Cisco isn't looking to invest in the future."

He said the server blades market represents a $6 billion opportunity for HPE and its partners and it's "all coming up for grabs right now."

Flash storage: As a $7.7 billion market growing at 15%, the transition to all-flash storage is "a huge opportunity" for HPE partners to disrupt, Davis said.

Among HPE's differentiators in the flash market is its InfoSight predictive analytics technology, which HPE gained through its Nimble Storage acquisition. Now deployed in all HPE storage systems, InfoSight uses machine learning and AI to predict and remediate storage environment issues.

Davis said HPE has looked to gain a strong position by recently rolling out the HPE Store More Guarantee for the Nimble all-flash array. Launched in March, Store More Guarantee promises customers that the Nimble product "will store more data per raw terabyte of storage than any other vendor's" all-flash array, according to HPE. The guarantee states that HPE will accommodate the customer's additional storage for free if HPE Nimble all-flash array fails to meet the storage efficiency of a competitor's array.

Long-term HPE partner plays

HPE's Super Six long-term technology opportunities focus on generational changes occurring within customer organizations. Davis said these changes will be "long-lasting over the next three, five, maybe 10 years."

Everything as a service: HPE recognizes that the public cloud has transformed customer expectations of how IT should operate. The main expectations are that IT should be scalable and customers should pay only for what they use, Davis said. HPE's solution for this market trend is HPE GreenLake consumption-based services delivered by HPE Pointnext. The company unveiled a partner program for HPE GreenLake Flex Capacity services on Monday.

"It is critical that we lead with everything as a service [and] we lead with a consumption model with HPE GreenLake because it is what customers want," Davis said.

Software-defined infrastructure: HPE said it is looking to deliver an on-premises yet public cloud-like experience for customers at lower pricing compared with cloud. Core to that aim is the vendor's software-defined strategy, which Davis said partners can think of as "going hand in hand" with HPE's everything-as-a-service focus.

To cash in on the opportunity, HPE partners need to start customer conversations with HPE OneView, which manages the data center's software-defined systems, he said. Synergy, HPE's composable infrastructure platform, is another important piece for capturing the opportunity. Synergy "is really one solution for all of your customers' workloads, whether they are virtualized, bare-metal [or] containers. It really gives a very flexible, automated experience to your customers with the maximum efficiency of resources," he said.

HPE's acquisition of Plexxi plays an important role, providing hyper-converged networking technology. "What [Plexxi] enables us to do is put that same composability that you have come to love in Synergy into hyper-converged," he said.

Intelligent edge: The intelligent edge was a main area of focus at its Discover conference, held in conjunction with GPS. HPE revealed it would invest $4 billion over the next four years in intelligent edge technology and services.

"This is a massive, disruptive opportunity that we see," Davis said, adding that the total addressable market is expected to reach $26 billion by 2020.

Antonio Neri, HPE's president and CEO, told HPE Global Partner Summit 2018 attendees that "most of the data ... is now generated on what we call 'the edge.'" Seventy-five percent of data is generated on the edge, he added.

The edge is where "we live and work, where billions of people and trillions of things come together, interacting with each other but most importantly interacting with data in a secure way," Neri noted. "That's the opportunity: In this sea of 1s and 0s, how do we create value?"

Davis pointed to HPE's Aruba Network's portfolio as the means for HPE partners to jump into the intelligent edge market. Additionally, though HPE's acquisition of Niara, Aruba IntroSpect user and entity behavior analytics technology can play a role.

"We see opportunities in every industry, everywhere around the globe," Davis said.

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