Intel Promotes Head Of Its Data Center Group As Partners See Booming Business

Intel continues to invest heavily in data center and cloud, saying Thursday it has promoted its Data Center Group general manager, Diane Bryant, to executive vice president of the group.

According to Intel, the appointment is the latest indication of the company’s strategic transformation to tighten focus on ’the elevated role of the cloud and data center businesses as growth drivers.’

’The data center has become a primary growth engine for Intel, and under Diane’s leadership, it reported record revenue of $16 billion in 2015,’ said Intel CEO Brian Krzanich in a statement. ’This elevated role reflects the significance of the cloud to Intel’s strategy as we transform the business, and Diane’s proven ability to extend our value proposition to accelerate public, private and hybrid cloud adoption.’

[Related: Intel Partners: CEO's Vision For Company In The Cloud, Data Center Is 'Valuable For The Channel']

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CRN was unable to reach Bryant for an interview before press time.

Bryant’s former position as general manager for the Data Center Group, which she had held since 2012, involved managing data center strategy, product development for enterprise, cloud service providers and high-performance computing infrastructure.

The promotion is the latest signal of the Santa Clara, Calif.-based company ramping up its investment in data center, cloud and the Internet of Things. Earlier this week, Krzanich wrote in a blog post that Intel was transforming from a PC company to one that powers the cloud and connected computing devices. Last week, the company said it will cut 11 percent of its workforce as part of its initiative to "intensify focus in high-growth areas."

Donna Shepard, senior vice president of Dallas-based M&A Technology, an Intel partner, stressed that data center was a lucrative market from which Intel, and its channel partners, can profit.

’In the last three years the data center booms have been phenomenal,’ she said. ’Intel’s investment in data center is great for the channel because we get to play in that space as the middleman. If you are a partner who has data centers, you can be the middleman, for private, public or hybrid cloud. Even if you don’t have data centers you can play the role of reseller.’

The Data Center Group is a vital segment for Intel’s growth—the company last week posted first-quarter results for its data center segment, which grew 9 percent over the same quarter the year before, even as it lowered its PC market expectations, saying it sees the market declining in the high single digits in 2016 -- higher than earlier expectations.

’We’re starting to see the broader picture of what Intel’s trying to do,’ said Shepard. ’They’ve been telling us for years that embedded will be the future; they’ve been telling us to get into services and cloud and that we can’t live on hardware alone.’