Which established manufacturers will kick on this year? We asked executives from VARs and MSPs including Softcat, OCSL and ANS for their tips
Chief digital officer, RedPixie
Tips: Citrix, Barracuda Networks, HPE
RedPixie may be a Microsoft Azure specialist, but its chief digital officer Mitchell Feldman is betting on one of Microsoft's staunch allies, Citrix, to enjoy a renaissance in 2018.
Although questions over Citrix ownership remain, the desktop virtualisation specialist's share price is currently at an all-time high and it is now pursuing a cloud-first strategy that mirrors RedPixie's own, Feldman (pictured) said.
"I went to the Citrix Summit in Anaheim [last month] and to me it seemed like a mini Microsoft Inspire or WPC," he said. "All the rhetoric I received is that they are incredibly focused on pivoting their business to be cloud-first. It sounds like they are almost going on the same journey as Microsoft, and going to that annuity-based model as opposed to licensing. They are rewarding more favourably towards cloud deals.
"I think Citrix lost their way a bit. They've definitely got their mojo back and I think they are going to accelerate next year and beyond."
A union with Microsoft will come sooner rather than later, however, Feldman predicted.
"[Microsoft VP] Brad Anderson was at the Citrix Summit and they were singing from the same hymn sheet and playing nicely," he said. "Some of their tools integrate seamlessly with each other. Microsoft have never really owned the virtualisation space from a desktop perspective so my gut feel is it's going to happen, whether that's now or in a couple of years."
Feldman also picked out Barracuda Networks and HPE as vendors poised to fly this year.
"I can see HPE turning it around and becoming a cloud-first company with services and product built for a cloud world," he said.
"People are questioning where they stand, but they've bought SimpliVity and recently bought an AWS shop called CTP - I think they are going to pivot a lot more quickly than anyone thought."