HPE channel chief preparing for transformation
The recently appointed global channel chief at #HPE is working on ways to ensure the firm is helping partners navigate through an era of digital transformation It’s not been that long since Denzil Samuels took up the global channel chief role at HPE. He came into an organisation that has an established partner organisation with high levels of satisfaction from resellers. His task is not only to keep the current ecosystem happy but to look to the future and prepare for some of the changes that digital transformation is bringing. He took some time out from an EMEA partner advisory board session to sit down and sketch out his vision of the future. Let’s start with asking why you joined HPE? I have been here 100 days. I joined from GE Digital so I had a chance to see first hand from my days at GE Digital what was going on in terms of this digital transformation. It is very powerful this whole industrial revolution, the internet of things and the amazing technology shifts that are going on at the edge. I also had a chance to see the portfolio of our competitors and our ability to address that. It was clear to me that HPE hands down had the best strategy and the best portfolio to really take advantage of this incredible change that is going on in the world. In addition to that HPE has the best partner programme. It’s not just saying that but partners and independent third parties comparing it and reviewing it. So it is great to come to a company, especially a guy like myself who has been a channel and alliances person for a very long time, to come to a company that is channel first, partner first and partner centric. We have built that reputation over decades and we are the most profitable partner programme in the industry by orders of magnitude. So it is exciting to come to a partner centric organisation and help take this to the next level. What does taking it to the next level mean? So as rich as our programme is, and by the way when I say rich our profitability with our partners is in some cases 4 to 8 times our nearest competitor, on top of that we are making it richer. We are announcing pay at net, which allows our partners to get the highest level of back-end rebates in the industry and in addition to that we are announcing the inclusion and development of competencies. We already have product certifications but we are introducing competencies, because as you look at this world of digital transformation and driving outcomes for the customers it is knowing how to use that product portfolio and knowing how to put it into an outcome for the customer that is going to drive success. In order to do that you need to have the competencies, the industrial or vertical know how and the horizontal know how, etc. How real is digital transformation? The digital transformation that is going on is significant, so let me give an example, because often the best way to show what is going on is to tell a story. I will use a story that is familiar to me, which is GE. Over the years when GE, Rolls Royce or Pratt and Whitney sold jet engines to airlines what they would do is sell the engine and an onerous maintenance contract. Because you really don’t want a plane to have an engine fail on you mid-flight. That onerous maintenance contract is 80% of the profit that GE makes from the sale of the product. It’s good for GE but at the same time it’s not so good for the airline because they have to have that engine physically removed from the wing of the plane for three weeks a year. When the engine is off the plane it cannot fly so the loss of revenue for three weeks is significant. Along comes digital transformation and every blade, and there are 100 in an engine, has an electronic vein oir sensors. That blade is transmitting significant amounts of data, per flight per engine is anywhere from 1-5TB of data. That data is taken and analyised and it can tell the airline or GE if the blade has lost some coating or if it is cracked. It can analyise it based on the weather conditions. It can analyise it based upon whether it is flying above the dusty skies of the Sahara or the polluted skies of China versus the less polluted air over North America or Western Europe. Because that wear and tear all effects the blade in the aircraft. Because you are able to look at that information real-time you have eliminated the need for off-wing time because the moment you notice deterioration in any blade you are able to replace it while the plane is parked or in a hanger without the need to take the engine off the plane.