VMware partner ecosystem tapped to accelerate cloud projects

VMware is expanding ties with global systems integrators and other partners as it looks for resources to help customers ramp up the adoption of its cloud technology.

VMware is enlisting partners to speed up its customers' cloud deployments, with global systems integrators playing a key role.

In one case in point, Wipro, a $10 billion technology and consulting services provider based in Bangalore, India, last week launched a dedicated VMware business unit. That move is part of an expanded collaboration between the companies that aims to accelerate customers' digital transformation projects. The alliance will involve "multimillion-dollar investments" in sales, alliances and delivery resources worldwide, according to the companies.

The updated Wipro relationship follows VMware's rollout earlier this month of its Multi-Cloud Adoption Program (MCAP). The program, which offers financial incentives to spark customers' VMware Cloud uptake, has signed several large integrators and consultancies. Participants include Wipro, Accenture, Ahead, CDW, Deloitte, DXC Technology, Insight Enterprises, Presidio, SHI, Softchoice, TeraSky and World Wide Technology (WWT). VMware believes partners can best help clients through sophisticated cloud deployments spanning private and public platforms and also boost adoption of multi-cloud offerings such as VMware Cloud on AWS.

The VMware partner initiatives arrive as cloud customers, in general, clamor for quicker turnaround on digital transformation. Gartner's annual CIO survey, published in October, found that 59% of executives believe digital projects take too long to complete. Faster ROI has become ever more critical in a shaky economy as businesses look to demonstrate the efficacy of their technology investments. Service providers have responded with accelerators to boost time to value.

Wipro's VMware partnership expands

Wipro's VMware business unit will focus on the industry expertise within its FullStride Cloud Services, which offers consulting, modernization, DevSecOps and cloud security, among other offerings. Wipro will provide those services in conjunction with VMware's Cross-Cloud services, a multi-cloud product portfolio. It aims to simplify VMware implementations and accelerate application deployment.

Such multi-cloud implementations complement customers' commitments to hyperscalers, noted Jo Debecker, senior vice president and global head of cloud and infrastructure services at Wipro. He said Wipro works with customers to choose the appropriate public cloud for a specific workload. VMware's multi-cloud products help Wipro with migration and management, he added.

As for industry-specific efforts, the Wipro business unit will emphasize banking and financial services, healthcare, and consumer and retail. Wipro said its VMware unit will tap the company's more than 10,000 domain experts in those vertical markets. The company will deliver its VMware services through FullStride Cloud Studios in the U.S., Europe and India.

Chart showing VMware Cloud on AWS partner opportunities.
VMware Cloud on AWS is among the products eligible for the MCAP program.

Boosting VMware Cloud migration

VMware's MCAP, meanwhile, intends to nudge cloud projects to the front of the queue among customers juggling many technology priorities.

"We are still competing with other IT projects within the customers' ecosystems," said Terence Gleeson, senior director of partner go-to-market for VMware Multi-Cloud. The program's goal is to remove cloud migration objections through financial incentives. VMware views partners as the means for offering those inducements and managing the resulting projects.

"We want to onboard customers successfully and quickly so they are consuming VMware Cloud services," Gleeson said. "When we looked at who can help our customers do that better than anyone, it's our partners."

MCAP is open to VMware partners that have obtained the top services competency for VMware Cloud on AWS. Partners can apply for the MCAP incentive for projects worth more than $500,000 and offer customers MCAP-eligible options including VMware Cloud on AWS and VMware Cloud Universal. The latter is a multi-cloud purchasing and consumption program in which customers purchase credits and apply them to deployments of VMware Cloud infrastructure and services.

VMware Cloud Universal opens the door for inclusion of additional offerings. Google Cloud VMware Engine (GCVE), for example, can also be included within MCAP if customers apply VMware Cloud Universal credits for that service. The same will hold true for the Azure VMware Solution, once that offering is officially available in VMware Cloud Universal, a VMware spokesman said.

How MCAP works

MCAP's financial incentive depends on the size of the deal and the scope of the cloud migration statement of work (SOW) the customer agrees upon. Based on that information, VMware carves out a percentage of the deal's value and pays that amount to the customer as a rebate offsetting the cost of migration.

We need partners to be at the forefront of delivering those migration services.
Terence GleesonSenior director, partner go-to-market, VMware Multi-Cloud

For example, if a VMware Cloud project were valued at $1 million and the MCAP percentage set at 4%, a $40,000 rebate would be applied to the cost of migration services as determined in the SOW. A $200,000 migration fee, for example, would shrink to $160,000 after the rebate.

Also under MCAP, VMware offers partners its tools and processes for speeding up migrations. Partners, however, can use their own tools and processes, if they prefer, Gleeson said.

The bottom line: VMware wants partners to expand their migration offerings. "We need partners to be at the forefront of delivering those migration services," Gleeson said.

Partner reaction

Partners said MCAP will bolster VMware Cloud uptake and fit into their services portfolios.

"Customer demand for VMware Cloud offerings has grown at a rapid rate as we come to the end of 2022," said Bob Olwig, vice president of corporate business development at WWT. "VMware has made it clear that they want customers to transition from a perpetual licensing model toward a SaaS/subscription model."

As for 2023, Olwig said he expects to see more customers transition to VMware Cloud offerings such as VMware Cloud Universal, VMware Cloud on AWS and GCVE.

"The MCAP program is another tool to aid customers as they embark on their multi-cloud journey," he added.

The VMware migration program will "help ease customers' overall cloud adoption lifecycle," Debecker said. MCAP participation is included within Wipro's VMware business unit, he added.

Azi Handley, global VMware leader at Kyndryl, an IT infrastructure services provider with headquarters in New York City, said MCAP lines up with the company's cloud services approach. Kyndryl, which has one of the largest VMware footprints worldwide, provides a Multicloud Management Services offering, she noted.

Key partner use cases

Shifting on-premises IT strategies and disaster recovery as a service rank among the top factors influencing VMware Cloud migration, according to partners.

"The key use cases that we tend to see during customer engagements focus on data center migration, capacity expansion and disaster recovery," Olwig said.

Kyndryl, meanwhile, sees opportunity in VMware Tanzu, which provides management and governance for multi-cloud Kubernetes deployments. The company earlier this month expanded its Tanzu offering, adding VMware vSphere on premises and VMware on AWS capabilities.

Handley cited six use cases spanning multi-cloud infrastructures: moving existing or building new workloads for cloud; managing work across different clouds; preparing for cloud-native applications; planning modernization strategies; modernizing applications and infrastructure; and automating modernized applications and infrastructure at scale.

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