HPE's new UK and Ireland boss Marc Waters has said the channel should not fear the vendor's plans to sell off more and more parts of the business as he sets out his strategy for the role.
Waters (pictured) had been babysitting the UK and Ireland business since the summer when Andy Isherwood moved up the ranks to run EMEA, but at HPE's partner gig in Boston this week, it was announced he got the job permanently.
This time a year ago HP was still one company and since then has split into two - HP Inc and HPE. The latter, Waters' business, last week announced the so-called spin-merger of its non-core software business to Micro Focus, following a similar ‘spin-merger' of its Enterprise Services business to CSC in May.
When asked if HPE partners ought to worry that the areas in which they specialise might get sold off in future too, Waters said no, adding that no partners had voiced those concerns too him.
"If you look at HP as was, it was a big technology conglomerate," he said. "The parts of it were well defined - Enterprise Services, Software, PC, Print and Enterprise Group.
"So [the] non-core parts of the business, they were very defined groups. So Enterprise Group has always been a single entity and you have benefits in having them all in one place. There is increasing convergence in the market. Meg [Whitman, HPE CEO] has been very, very clear about the value of the Enterprise Group staying together - server, storage, networks and services - it has got to remain together."
He added that partners in the non-core software space will be better off under Micro Focus anyway.
"We never really benefitted from having the businesses together, or our channel probably never saw that benefit coming through."
"It benefits partners when these businesses are successful," he said. "Enterprise Services was never resold, so you're probably talking about software. The software business as a standalone company will be much more successful than it was as part of HPE, or HP as was. And that's clearly what Meg thinks. Our channel partners say they believe that too - it's about focus, isn't it?
"As that business is more successful, it benefits the channel, so our interests are aligned from that point of view. One of the reasons it will be more successful is because we never really benefitted from having the businesses together or our channel probably never saw that benefit coming through. People see that and get that - they have confidence in that because of how well we did the separation."
Throughout HPE and HP Inc's conference, talk of Dell and EMC - which last week completed their mammoth merger - was rife. HP Inc's CEO Dion Weisler picked on the duo, and others, in his keynote speech, and a number of execs from both vendors scoffed at the union, especially after Dell EMC showed up outside the venue on Tuesday morning with performers dancing around with giant Dell EMC-branded balloons.
Waters joined the line of HP and HPE executives to take a pop at the firm, taking aim at Cisco too.
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