IT organisations—under increasing pressure to quickly and efficiently deliver more applications...
IT organisations—under increasing pressure to quickly and efficiently deliver more applications and services, as well as store and deliver exponentially increasing amounts of data while reducing costs—are constrained by traditional datacentre and server architectures. The American technology behemoth, Hewlett-Packard, has introduced its new HP ProLiant Gen9 servers, which are designed to address these challenges by delivering flexible, scalable computing resources that are aligned to companies’ business goals. “The rise of mobile, cloud, social and big data are driving the need for a new approach to the datacentre and its processing engine—the server—to enable successful business outcomes,” says Vikram K, director, HP Servers, HP India. “HP created the x86 server market 25 years ago, and now we are setting the stage for the next quarter century with HP ProLiant Gen9 servers and compute, which combines the best of traditional IT and cloud environments to enable a truly software-defined enterprise,” he tells Sudhir Chowdhary in a recent interaction. Excerpts:
How will HP’s new server line benefit the customers?
The new HP ProLiant Gen9 portfolio is a major delivery milestone in HP’s compute strategy, which addresses IT demands with a vast pool of processing resources that can be located anywhere, sealed to any workload and available at all times. If you talk about the top 10 banks, telecom firms or pharmaceutical firms—all of them run on the ProLiant. In 1989, we started the product called the SystemPro; this is the 25th year since that product. We have led this market ever since with innovations that have dramatically transformed the datacentre, such as HP Moonshot and HP Apollo. We have gone leaps ahead in terms of our ability to define and redefine again.
The HP ProLiant Gen9 servers are optimised for convergence, cloud and software-defined environments. The rise of mobile, cloud, social and big data is driving the need for a new approach to the datacentre and its processing engine—the server—to enable successful business outcomes. We are setting the stage for the next quarter century with HP ProLiant Gen9 servers and compute, which combines the best of traditional IT and cloud environments to enable a truly software-defined enterprise.
Do you have customers already in India for your new offering?
We have just started going around in the country talking about Gen9. We had something happening in Singapore last month, where a lot of customers from India were present. We got them to centrally get the message going. In fact, quite a few are really keen on the transition to Gen9.
The Indian market is mixed with different segments. There are telecom, banks and manufacturing organisations and we have seen over a period of time that they like richness in terms of features, automation capabilities and more recently due to all the mega trends—cloud, big data, social media, analytics—in terms of how convergence can happen in the given environment. We are also looking at the software-defined architectures. Indians generally love new technology and the next generation of products.
Any customer wins that you would like to talk about?
Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) is Asia’s first stock exchange and one of India’s leading exchange groups. It has implemented Proliant servers, backed by HP Data centre care support. An integrated approach from HP has helped BSE to launch a new platform on or before time for all the major segments like equity, currency and derivatives. A well-defined support strategy from HP has helped the exchange to run critical operations and a platform which is open, flexible and scalable to meet future product launches.
What initiatives is HP putting in place to gain customer traction?
This is a continuous journey for us. We go across segments, verticals and over a period of time we have been extremely good. They have been given certain business functions, applications and the right ports with product sets that we have. Some of the market share results are quite indicative of the work we do. Ours is a journey that started long back with blades and now we have converged. We have specific products for specific needs.
How is HP Servers performing in India?
We are doing very well. We have been able to categorise on some of the market changes primarily because of the mega trends and others are some competitive changes which have added to the revenue. HP was ranked No. 1 in India x86 server market with 45.2% unit shipment share in Q2 2014.
What will be your go-to-market strategy for the Gen9 portfolio?
We will continue to do all the good things we did in the past. We have certification programmes which is available to customers who wish to re-architect their enterprise because all the mega trends have an enterprise imperative. And for all those who wish to move to Gen9, we have sufficient documentation at the back-end to help customers with the migration process. We have the technology imperative for the partners and also for customers. It is called the technology upgrade programme for the customers.
With a wide range of new and expanded capabilities and price-points, HP’s new compute portfolio opens doors for products, solutions, and value-added services, in small and mid-sized markets, enterprise accounts and high performance computing. Channel partners can help existing customers modernise their infrastructure, cross-sell and up sell with complementary offerings to grow revenue and margin. Partners can go after net new business by helping customers modernise IT with efficient compute solutions of servers, storage, networking and services. This represents a very large revenue opportunity for partners with the HP installed base, as well as with the competitor installed base of legacy technology.
HP has embarked on the New Style of IT for a while now. How has this been accepted amongst your customers and partners?
As we said there was a need of New Style of IT. We followed that up with the sure set of products that are tangible. The Converged Infrastructure has various products like Moonshot which is more application specific and Apollo is more workload specific for the scientific community. Some of the sessions we have with customers start with them nodding with amusement. The questions that come up are specifically around convergence and Moonshot, getting it more cloud ready, application specific and workload specific—this is what CIOs are asking for today. These three areas largely define the mega trends and they need to be there and obviously big data plays a key role.