EMC chief on what businesses need to transition to digital future
By Gabey Goh May 7, 2015
- Huge digital wave crashing down on ‘business as usual’
- Three key business imperatives organisations must address
THE ‘Digital Future’ is one of a growing global community of digital citizens who are always connected and engaged online, and businesses need to prepare for it.
“We’re living in interesting times, with a huge digital wave crashing down on ‘business as usual.’ And businesses have to decide whether they want to ride the opportunity presented by this wave or crash under it,” said EMC Corp chairman and chief executive officer Joe Tucci (pic above).
“And we are here to help you figure out how to do that,” he said in his keynote on the second day of EMC World 2015, which is going on in Las Vegas this week.
Tucci outlined three key business imperatives that organisations must address in order to successfully transition into this digital age.
“The first is you need to build a digital agenda. To do that, you need to rediscover the art of writing software for a new era that is more agile and pervasive.
“The second is the transform IT to enable it to support this, and the way to do this is to move to cloud technology. The hybrid cloud approach the best way for many companies transitioning with either legacy systems or which require flexibility on whether they go with private or public cloud offerings.
“The third is to have a laser focus on cyber risk, especially with the shift of data to the cloud. You’ve got to catch the bad guys in the act before the information gets stolen. This is where security analytics comes in to understand what’s happening and change the course,” he added.
Fulfilling these three imperatives, and to help businesses move to the Third Platform – the combination of smart devices, social, cloud and big data analytics – forms the focus of the EMC Federation Strategy, first unveiled in March last year.
Via a federated business model that includes EMC Information Infrastructure (EMCii), RSA, VCE, VMware and Pivotal, the company aims to provide ‘outcome-focused’ solutions that leverage on best-of-breed, integrated technology – while preserving customers’ ability to choose and deploy products from other IT companies.
“Our core philosophy and pledge to our customers is to give you choice with no lock-in – to do this is expensive and requires scale which EMC has,” Tucci declared.
He said that the ‘EMC family’ boasts over 70,000 people – including more than 21,000 in go-to-market and sales roles, 16,000 engineers and developers, and 22,000 in services and consulting.
The Hopkinton, Massachusetts-based company also boasts 9,200 patents already issued or pending, with another additional 6,000 licences in its portfolio from other companies.
“We like to say that we are a people company in the technology business, and to stay a leading force in the business, we invest 12% of our annual revenue in R&D (research and development) and use another 8% for acquisitions in technology companies,” said Tucci.
“All together, last year our acquisition and investments totalled almost US$5 billion, so we’re putting our money where our mouth is – ensuring we’re putting sufficient cash and to ensure customers can meet business demands,” he said.
Tucci also said that over the past three years, EMC has also acquired key companies – including XtremIO, ScaleIO, Pivotal Labs and DSSD – to beef up its technology portfolio.
“We took about US$6 billion off our revenue sheet for those acquisitions, and last year they collectively made US$1 billion in revenue. This year, they are slated for US$2 billion in revenue.
“We’re still losing money but these are the investments we’re placing to put power behind our vision and to help our customers,” he said.
Meanwhile Pivotal Software Inc chief executive officer (CEO) Paul Maritz (pic above) said that every business in the world is “realising it has to participate in the digital world.”
“That means delivering a digital experience to their customers that has to be differentiated – which means that it is not something you can buy off-the-shelf but must be customised and unique to your value proposition,” he said in his keynote address at EMC World 2015.
Palo Alto, California-based Pivotal is a spin-out and joint venture of EMC and its subsidiary VMware Inc. Maritz was formerly the CEO of VMware.
“Businesses need to rediscover product development and that means rediscovering software development,” he said.
“We’ve found tremendous appetite to engage in this and we’re set up to enable this transformation by partnering with our customers.
“We’re not developing for you but developing with you so that the expertise in agile product development gets taken home,” he added.
Gabey Goh reports from EMC World in Las Vegas at the kind invitation of EMC Corp. All editorials are independent.
Previous EMC World 2015 stories:
Unfazed by storage revenue dip, EMC lifts lid on innovations
With US$1bil in revenue, XtremIO unleashes ‘The Beast’
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