Status and the Nimble acquisition by HPE

Just a quick post since I’m getting inquiries regarding the status of my vital signs.

Yes, I’m alive, just very busy helping with the ongoing integration of Nimble Storage into HPE and all kinds of cool AI.

All kinds of training to be done all around, positioning guides to be written, strategy to plan, technology to design.

The Acquisition

For anyone not aware, Nimble Storage was recently acquired by HPE.

There are several reasons this is a good thing for both companies, but also a sobering event for any remaining independent storage vendors.

You see, most remaining standalone storage vendors are not really differentiated, and VCs aren’t investing in this field like they used to. The vast majority of storage vendors will go bankrupt, a few will be acquired (even that is drying up), and a couple may remain independent.

If you’re a customer looking at storage vendors, and independent XYZ vendor is claiming they’re better than Nimble, ask them why they weren’t acquired by HPE (or anyone else) for a tiny fraction of what Nimble cost. Surely that would have been a better deal? Since their product is so superior? 🙂

Nimble Support Will Remain Awesome

Nimble Support will absolutely not become part of the overall HPE support organization.

Indeed, the final decision has been made, and Nimble Support will stay a part of Nimble Engineering (which is not where most storage vendors keep Support, but maybe that’s part of the reason support problems are so endemic in other companies).

Regarding the rest of HPE Support: The master plan is to use Nimble methodologies and technologies to improve and optimize HPE support for all HPE products.

InfoSight Will Cover Other HPE Products

Our AI & Analytics framework, InfoSight, is one of the ways our Support organization enjoys a massively unfair advantage in resolving difficult problems across the entire infrastructure (not just the arrays – statistically, we resolve and prevent more problems from outside storage than originate in storage).

The plan is have InfoSight go far beyond Nimble systems: to 3PAR, servers, networking… Because, you see, HPE makes all kinds of interesting things that can power an entire data center.

Plus, we will expand InfoSight to applications and the Cloud, maybe even areas such as protection against cybercrime like ransomware.

Having InfoSight be the AI for the Data Center is a pretty exciting future to live in and I’m proud to be a part of this effort.

Nimble Storage Complements the HPE Portfolio

With the acquisition of Nimble, HPE acquired an immensely capable, modern storage platform. A platform universally loved by its customers.

Of course, there are certain things Nimble Storage arrays don’t do today, but other HPE platforms do, and vice versa. Such is the power of a portfolio.

All in all, Nimble/HPE will now be able to create even more comprehensive solutions than before.

The Combined Might of HPE and Nimble is Colossal

HPE is a huge company, and enjoys certain advantages as such:

  • #1 in servers (incl. #1 in HPC)
  • Top 2 in storage, BURA (disk and tape), networking (wired and wireless)
  • Amazing supply chain
  • Innovation (check out The Machine, and Composable Infrastructure for just two cool examples)

I can’t give more details in this public forum but imagine what having access to HPE’s supply chain can do (including buying stuff in huge quantities and all that implies, plus early access to certain exotic technologies to help us improve the Nimble platform).

Plus there is the element of hugely expanded reach. With Nimble, HPE gets the chance to touch customers HPE wouldn’t normally speak to. Conversely, Nimble also gets a chance to touch customers Nimble wouldn’t normally speak to.

It’s About The People

Good acquisitions aren’t about just the technology. People build the technology. People sell the technology. People support the technology (well, AI does a lot of the support in our case, but you get the point).

HPE just hired, en masse, an amazing and aggressive team of IT professionals.

Nimble has around 12,000 customers at the time of this writing (several times more than any of the remaining independent storage vendors, my alma mater excluded), and each of those customers meant taking the sale away from an incumbent storage vendor that had to fight us tooth and nail.

A strong salesforce is necessary to do this, not just a strong product.

This strong salesforce will now have access to the entire HPE portfolio…

Fun times ahead.

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