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Hybrid Cloud Doesn’t Have To Be Intimidating, Says IBM

‘We can’t do this alone. With the $1 trillion opportunity around hybrid cloud, the only way we are going to succeed is with you,’ IBM’s Deepa Krishnan tells solution providers.

The key for solution providers will be in understanding the hybrid cloud model, said Deepa Krishnan, IBM’s vice president of hybrid cloud digital platform and consumption.

IBM, like many of the largest tech firms, is on its own mission to transform. Data is the lifeblood of businesses, and data storage and processing will require a hybrid environment. IBM and its partners must meet customers where they are, Krishnan told an audience of solution providers at the 2021 Best of Breed (BoB) Conference in Atlanta, hosted by CRN parent The Channel Company.

“Our clients are on a transformation journey and so are all of yours,” she said. “The key is understanding this hybrid cloud, an open architecture that IBM believes really is the future for our clients.”

[RELATED: IBM CEO Arvind Krishna’s 10 Boldest Statements From Best Of Breed 2021 ]

Businesses are at different points of their cloud journey. Some have already moved workloads to hyperscale providers, while others are at the starting line and find moving their data “daunting and scary,” Krishnan said.

“The research has shown that for a customer who understands how to get their workloads running against this heterogeneous environment; they get 2.5x value. Think about that. Go to your customers [and say], ‘How can I help you unlock 2.5x value for your investments?’ Move to hybrid.”

Richard McKinnon, CEO of Sacramento, Calif.-based solution provider DVBE Technology Group, sees hybrid cloud as a great growth opportunity.

“I think more people are open to hybrid the more they learn about it because it‘s not all or nothing. The mixture is interesting and refreshing,” McKinnon said.

DVBE Technology Group serves many public sector clients in the state of California who are evaluating multiple cloud offerings. The public sector, said McKinnon, is starting to understand how technology is evolving and what kinds of solutions could benefit their businesses. “Aa lot of times, people in certain [industries] are afraid of change, so I think I think hybrid cloud is a great option.”

IBM’s Red Hat wasn’t an accidental purchase, Krishnan said. Open-source software leader Red Hat can help partners build and run workloads anywhere clients want. “If [customers] have a propensity to run something on Microsoft Azure or AWS, no problem. It doesn’t matter where, but the only way you can do that is with an open architecture,” she said. ”Our acquisition of Red Hat is really about bringing in the Red Hat capabilities to provide all [partners] and enterprises with the openness that you need.”

IBM can also co-create hybrid solutions with partners, Krishnan said. “Bring your expertise, your knowledge that is very specific and tailored around your customers, with our skill sets. We can go do it together,” she said.

Right now, only about 25 percent of workloads are in the cloud today, with some industries, like finance, putting even less -- around 15 percent of its workloads in the cloud. That’s untapped opportunity for channel partners, Krishnan said. w

“We can’t do this alone. With the $1 trillion opportunity around hybrid cloud, the only way we are going to succeed is with you,” Krishnan told channel partners.   

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