HPE: Cloud And Storage Chiefs Leave, America's Sales Chief On The Way Out, Cloud Business Reorganized

HPE's Antonio Neri

Hewlett Packard Enterprise is replacing several key product and sales executives and reorganizing its cloud business in the wake of the decision to spin off its Enterprise Services business and merge it with CSC.

The changes also come after HPE's June restructuring of its sales and marketing operations.

Antonio Neri, executive vice president and general manager of the HPE Enterprise Group, wrote in a Tuesday blog post that his group is making a number of promised changes to help it strengthen its organization and be better prepared to win in markets where it competes.

[Related: Partners Cheer HPE Sales And Marketing Restructuring; Two Top Execs To Step Aside]

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Neri wrote that several HPE executives have left or will be leaving the company. This follows the June news that CTO Martin Fink and Chief Customer Officer John Hinshaw plan to leave HPE by year-end.

Manish Goel, senior vice president and general manager of HP storage, has decided to leave HPE to "pursue other opportunities," Neri wrote. Goel will be replaced by Bill Philbin, a six-year Hewlett-Packard veteran who until this month served as HPE's vice president of data protection, data retention, and software-defined storage.

Goel had been a long-term storage exec at NetApp before leaving that company in late 2013 to join big data analytics company Guavus. Goel joined Hewlett-Packard, which split into today's HPE and HP Inc., in March of 2015. Philbin spent nearly three years in software development at IBM before moving to NetApp in late 2006, where he spent four years managing that company's core storage systems. He left NetApp to join HP in 2010.

Neri also wrote that HPE, which he said is seeing strong momentum across its Helion Cloud service portfolio, is reorganizing that business to move its Helion OpenStack and Helion CloudSystem teams to HPE's Enterprise Group to be part of the newly-created Software-Defined and Cloud Group.

"By bringing these assets together, we create a single organization tasked with a common mission – to provide best-in-class solutions that enable developers and operators to deploy their applications across traditional and cloud infrastructures, simply and effortlessly," Neri wrote.

The reorganization will result in Bill Hilf, senior vice president and general manager for the HPE cloud business, leaving the company. Hilf left Microsoft, where he was general manager for Windows Azure product management, in mid-2013 to join Hewlett-Packard where he has served as a top cloud business executive.

HPE has called on Mark Interrante to head the Software-Defined and Cloud Group, Neri wrote. Interrante, currently a senior vice president of engineering at HPE, joined the company two years ago after several years at Rackspace and Yahoo Media.

HPE is also making a major executive change in its sales team in the wake of the June Enterprise Group reorganization. Robert Vrij, managing director of Americas sales, will leave the company by year-end, at which point Jim Merritt, who currently leads HPE's Asia-Pacific and Japan sales, will take over, Neri wrote.

An HPE spokesperson told CRN via email that the company would not provide additional information about the changes beyond Neri's blog post.

Chris Case, president of Sequel Data Systems, an Austin, Tex.-based solution provider and HPE channel partner, told CRN that he does not expect any immediate impacts to his company's business from the changes Neri outlined.

"Our HPE business has been growing like crazy," Case said. "HPE had a number of layoffs recently, but we really didn't notice it. From the partner standpoint, everything seems fine with HPE."

Case would like to see HPE use the change in storage leadership to develop new NAS solutions as a way to better compete with HPE rival NetApp.

"NAS is the biggest weakness at HPE," he said. "HPE can front a 3PAR solution with a Windows Storage Server for NAS. But there's no true native NAS solution from the company. HP had its Ibrix line, but it didn't sell. And HPE has a solution based on Scality, but that's more focused on object storage."