Suppliers often try to ride upon the coattails of other suppliers' announcement by calling every analyst or journalist on their distribution list and presenting their view of the announcement. The recent announcement of a 3 year, $250 million agreement signed by HP and Microsoft Corporation is no exception. I've had the PR folks of many suppliers contact me so the executives they represent could present their viewpoints of this announcement. I think the most concise counter point to this announcement came from my friend Liliac Berniker of Fortisphere.
Here's a quick summary of what was a long and interesting conversation.
- The announcement was amorphous as it needed to be to sway opinions.
- Those already having made commitments to VMware or having deployed UNIX or Linux-based solutions won't find much of interest here.
- The two competitors are taking the battle for decision makers' hearts and minds to the cloud.
- It is clearly and attempt to check VMware and its partners and remake the balance of power in the industry.
- Both partners have also stood on other stages and declared allegiance to other partners blunting some of the impact of this move.
During the discussion, I was reminded of a line from Mary Poppins that explains why these alliances seldom have a major impact on opinions. Mary Poppins, speaking with Michael, said "That's a pie crust promise; easily made, easily broken!"
Vendors often announce partnerships and alliances with grand statements and much ballyhoo and then let them quietly die later when market conditions change or divergent forces that brought them together force them apart again.
Has your organization ever changed directions based upon such an announcement?