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  1. #1
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    [EN] VMware sells vCloud Air hosting biz to OvH

    Gavin Clarke
    4 Apr 2017

    VMware is selling its core infrastructure-as-a-service hosting business vCloud Air to OVH, the French cloud computing company.

    Financial terms of the sale, which is due to close in the second calendar quarter, were not revealed.

    Announcing the deal on Tuesday, Pat Gelsinger, VMware chief executive officer, called its sale “the next step” in vCloud Air’s evolution.

    vCloud Air customers in the US and Europe will move to OVH.

    Gelsinger packaged the deal as a win for customers, saying they will benefit from greater choice, with the ability to select from OVH’s global data centres, and experience faster performance.

    Gelsinger insisted that VMware remained committed to its “broader cross-cloud architecture for hybrid cloud”.

    VMware announced its vCloud initiative in 2008 and rebranded the service in 2014 as a hybrid, public infrastructure as a service (IaaS) to extend data centres already running vSphere. It provides a common management and network infrastructure.

    VMware has never broken out customer numbers for vCloud Air, making it difficult to assess take-up for the service.

    During its most recent fourth quarter, however, the Dell-owned VMware said the vCloud Air business had grown “robustly.” Overall, company revenue for the quarter to December 31 grew nine per cent year-on-year to $2 bn.

    But it’s safe to say that vCloud Air was not considered a top priority or worthwhile investment to Dell EMC, VMware's ultimate owner. Dell dropped the notion of running its own cloud some time ago, faced with a world defined and dominated by Amazon Web Services and, to a lesser extent, Microsoft and Google.

    VMware announced a partnership with AWS in October 2016 to provide a VMware vSphere-based cloud service on AWS.

    In 2011, VMware released Cloud Foundry, the open-cloud Platform-as-a-Service, which was shifted ito Pivotal Software and then on to the Cloud Foundry Foundation for stewardship.

    The company in December 2016 announced Cloud Foundation, which bundles vSphere, Virtual SAN and NSX network virtualization for software-defined data centres to the cloud. The beta was also announced the same month. The plan had been for Cloud Foundation on vCloud Air.

    https://www.theregister.co.uk/2017/0...loud_air_core/

  2. #2
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    PR: OVH Announces Intent to Acquire VMware vCloud Air Business

    vCloud Air, Marquee Customers, and Enterprise-Ready Support Team to Serve as Foundation for OVH's Launch into the US

    PALO ALTO, CA and RESTON, VA -- (Marketwired) -- 04/04/17 -- VMware (NYSE: VMW), a global leader in cloud infrastructure and business mobility, and OVH, a global hyper-scale cloud provider, today announced OVH intends to acquire the VMware vCloud® Air™ business. Financial details of the transaction were not disclosed. The transaction is expected to close in calendar Q2 2017.

    vCloud Air is VMware's cloud offering based on the software-driven data center and is designed specifically to meet enterprise needs delivering a secure, hybrid cloud experience. The recent introduction of bi-directional, zero downtime cloud migration and the hybrid DMZ architecture has enabled customers to accelerate the pace of migration to the cloud, while maintaining security, compliance and control. Since its inception, vCloud Air has serviced industry leading customers as they embrace a hybrid cloud environment.

    In conjunction with this announcement, VMware is reiterating its previously issued financial guidance for Q1 and the full fiscal year 2018.

    VMware has evolved its business strategy to focus on providing hybrid and cross-cloud software and services. Given this evolution, VMware is transitioning vCloud Air U.S. and European data centers, customer operations, and customer success teams to OVH. After the close of the acquisition, OVH will operate the service as vCloud Air Powered by OVH, will continue to leverage VMware's hybrid cloud technology, and will closely partner with VMware on go-to-market and customer support around the three proven vCloud Air use cases: data center extension, data center consolidation, and data center recovery.

    "We are pleased to announce this next step in vCloud Air's evolution. We have enjoyed a long and successful partnership with OVH and view this acquisition as an extension of our partnership and a positive for our customers and partners. Customers will have access to OVH's global footprint, high-touch customer support, and still retain the VMware SDDC technology innovation that they are accustomed to," said Pat Gelsinger, chief executive officer, VMware. "We remain committed to delivering our broader Cross-Cloud Architecture that extends our hybrid cloud strategy, enabling customers to run, manage, connect, and secure their applications across clouds and devices in a common operating environment."

    OVH is one of the largest cloud service providers in the world with more than one million customers and 260,000 servers deployed. A long-time VMware vCloud® Air Network™ partner with more than 200,000 VMs from thousands of customers running VMware vSphere® Private Cloud, OVH was recognized as "Service Provider of the Year" by VMware 2011-2014 and in 2016. Both companies collaborated to bring Software-defined Data Center (SDDC) as a Service to market in 2016. vCloud Air customers will benefit from greater choice as they select from OVH's global data centers across four continents and experience faster performance and workload mobility through the company's thousands of miles of dark fiber and 32 points of presence worldwide.

    "Through our strategic relationship with VMware, which includes joint R&D and best-in-class delivery of solutions, OVH leads the private cloud market in Europe," said Octave Klaba, chairman and CEO, OVH. "With this acquisition, OVH will offer a very unique value proposition for larger enterprise deployments, including rich capabilities for migration and advanced hybrid functionalities for virtual data centers. This will benefit all our clients across the globe."

    OVH recently announced its US-based business, adding two new data centers to their large global network of high performance and water cooling green technology. Its newly-announced management team is comprised of cloud hosting industry executives under the leadership of Russell P. Reeder as president and CEO.

    "OVH's global reach and technology innovation, combined with VMware's software-defined data center technology, will give customers competitive hyper-scale cloud economics," said Reeder. "Both companies are committed to providing a seamless transition for current vCloud Air customers, great customer support, increased access to our global network and modern green data centers."

    http://ir.vmware.com/overview/press-...s/default.aspx

  3. #3
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    OVH-VMware deal skips Australia and New Zealand

    Mark Pesce
    5 Apr 2017

    French cloud computing giant OVH will operate recently inhaled vCloud Air solely as a private and hybrid cloud, a change from VMware's practice of offering a roll-up-roll-up-bring-your-credit-card cloud.

    So said OVH vice-chair Laurent Allard today on a conference call shared with VMware's Hervé Basso, head of cloud and service providers for Southern EMEA.

    Allard said OVH will continue to use OpenStack for its public cloud offering so has no need to offer vCloud Air in public mode. The soon-to-be former VMware service wasn't a hit as public cloud. VMware did offer an on-demand service, but put far more effort into selling longer subscriptions. OVH backing away from on-demand vCloud Air is not surprising, but does put a final nail the the tale of VMware's public cloud ambitions.

    Allard and Basso also said the deal will see the VMware operations people who run vCloud Air join OVH. Head count was not discussed and both execs pointedly declined to discuss how much money has changed hands as a result of the deal.

    OVH thinks the deal will accelerate its growth: Allard said it would be the harbinger of “new services in terms of migration and management of hybridity”.

    The two execs tried to paint the change of ownership as not-very-jarring, pointing out that the two companies have worked together for years, share R&D around how to run VMware at scale, generally get along very well and expect long commitments to make vCloud Air work, and to ensure OVH can keep offering a fine service for those seeking general VMware hosting. Allard said OVH is close to an official announcement that it has adopted VMware's Cloud Foundation, which will be a nice proof point of the promised commitment.

    The Register has also learned that the deal excludes Australia and New Zealand. vCloud Air customers in the two nations will remain VMware customers. Which seems a little odd given OVH just opened in Australia.

    We've also asked whether vCloud Air's Japanese operations are part of the deal, whether VMware's Horizon-as-a-service has gone to OVH and what happens to AirWatch-as-a-service. We will bring you any information as it arrives.

    https://www.theregister.co.uk/2017/0...mware_details/

  4. #4
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    Theres's no shame in VMware quitting the public cloud

    Cisco and HPE couldn't make it work and Virtzilla probably dodged a server refresh cycle

    Simon Sharwood
    5 Apr 2017

    VMware quitting the public cloud by selling vCloud Air to OVH looks like failure, but is the best possible sort of failure because the company still has excellent prospects to turn a quid from the cloud, without having to operate one.

    Which is not to say that VMware is out of the woods. It clearly thought it could run a public cloud and that turns out not to be the case. That leaves it with a plan to keep building out a software-defined infrastructure stack it feels will deliver more value the more of it you implement and the deeper you go into hybrid cloud. That plan now rests on some muddled product lines that I'll get to later.

    In the short term, however, the vCloud Air's failure won't be too painful. The service probably made VMware a few tens of million dollars a year, not chump change but also not a hard-to-replace chunk of VMware's US$7bn total. vCloud Air also had the potential to cost VMware a lot of money: it was launched in 2013 and therefore was almost certainly getting close to end-of-life for the first set of servers and associated infrastructure. If selling to OVH means VMware has dodged that responsibility and associated capital expenditure, the financial impact of the deal could be pleasant.

    VMware might cop some heat from customers that relied on vCloud Air for exotic cloud workloads: The Register's virtualization desk has been told that VMware did some tricky stuff like running DOS workloads in vCloud Air, and that customers liked the fact it would hand-hold them as they got that up and running. There's nothing we see in this deal to stop VMware helping OVH to keep that stuff alive.

    Another positive is that VMware has freed itself from conflict between its own cloud and the 4,000-odd vCloud Air Network partners who run vSphere-powered clouds. Those partners may lament the fact VMware won't have skin in the game and therefore stops market-making, but there will still be lots of noise for them to latch onto once VMware-on-AWS fires up later this year.

    Gartner research director Michael Warrilow also pointed out to El Reg that OVH's European footprint is a plus for European businesses, especially in the time of Trump.

    Consider, also, that VMware is in good company as a cloud flop, given HPE and Cisco both created and then canned clouds. Both have deeper pockets than VMware by quite a distance too. If those two titans couldn't make a public cloud public viable, VMware's not in bad company.

    But let's get back VMware's product muddle. Most of the vCloud Air Network today runs more-or-less vanilla vSphere. But VMware also has a Cloud Foundation bundle of vSphere, Virtual SAN and NSX that it says is the best way to build a hybrid cloud (and is also a fine way to get VMware users to buy in to VSAN and NSX, thereby extending VMware's on-premises footprint). Gartner's Michael Warrilow also pointed out to El Reg that VMware's Photon Controller is basically a re-write of vCenter for hyperscale operations, which could also have potential for service providers.

    Just how Cloud Foundation, vSphere-on-AWS and Photon Controller fit together is currently a little mysterious. All offer a chance to make money from clouds. The three also overlap and muddy the waters, which VMware can do without.

    At a lower level, the deal means VMware has some explaining to do to those who signed up for vCloud Air assuming they'd get one throat to choke. Such customers' lives just became rather more complex, no matter the assurances offered by OVH and VMware.

    Speaking of complex, OVH also has a tricky job ahead of it to make the service work, because much of vCloud Air resides in third-party data centres from the likes of Equinix and Telstra. It must be galling for a cloud provider like OVH to have inherited obligations to rivals. Unpicking those arrangements without disruption is an unenviable task because flubs or outright failures have the potential to hurt customers.

    But it's hard to see much else in this deal that will immediately be bad for customers. Which means even though the mere fact of the deal is an admission of vCloud Air's failure, its one that won't mean pain for VMware and its customers.

    https://www.theregister.co.uk/2017/0..._ovh_analysis/

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