CRN Exclusive: Nutanix, SimpliVity, Pivot3 Are Tops In New Forrester Hyper-Converged Report

Nutanix, SimpliVity and Pivot3 were listed as leaders in the burgeoning hyper-converged infrastructure market by Forrester Research in a new report expected to be released this week.

In the report "The Forrester Wave: Hyperconverged Infrastructure (HCI)," a copy of which was obtained by CRN, the Cambridge, Mass.-based research firm reports on 12 hyper-converged infrastructure technology providers ranging from large legacy vendors such as EMC, Cisco Systems and Hewlett Packard Enterprise to small startups like Nutanix, SimpliVity and Pivot3.

Listed as leaders by Forrester were San Jose, Calif.-based Nutanix; Westborough, Mass.-based SimpliVity; and Austin, Texas-based Pivot3.

[Related: 23 Powerful Hyper-Converged Infrastructure Products]

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Pivot3, while smaller than Nutanix and SimpliVity, has the distinction of shipping hyper-converged infrastructure solutions since before its two leader peers were founded, Forrester reported. Pivot3 already has more than 1,600 customers, and was at the core of one of the two largest hyper-converged data storage clusters Forrester found in its research.

Forrester called Nutanix a leader for being able to boast of some of the largest managed clusters, the largest of which have more than 100 nodes, and cited the company's ease of use, simplified management and nondisruptive capacity. Forrester said that Nutanix's estimated annual revenue of $200 million makes it the largest hyper-converged infrastructure provider in revenue terms.

SimpliVity was cited for offering a solution that, while it is limited to 24 nodes, has a strong multisite capability, with total raw capacity in linked clusters reaching about 1.3 petabytes, Forester reported.

Of the three Forrester Wave leaders, both Nutanix and Pivot3 are reported to be looking at potential IPOs, according to various news reports. Pivot3 last week reported that its first-half 2016 revenue grew 103 percent compared with the second half of 2015, and that it added more than 400 customers to its installed base. Pivot3 also said its employee count grew 40 percent in the first half of 2016.

Nutanix and Pivot3 declined to comment on the Forrester Wave report, citing a Forrester embargo on discussing the report. SimpliVity did not respond to a CRN request for information in time for publication. Forrester acknowledged a CRN request for further information, but did not provide a response in time for publication.

The Forrester Wave is a visualization of market leadership similar to the more-well-known Gartner Magic Quadrant. In the Forrester Wave, vendors of a particular technology are divided into leaders, strong performers, contenders and challengers based on how well they do in terms of strategy and current offerings.

In its report, Forrester defines hyper-converged infrastructure "as an approach to technology infrastructure that packages server, storage and network functions into a modular unit and adds a software layer to discover, pool and reconfigure assets across multiple units quickly and easily without the need for deep technology skills."

Forrester categorized vendors in the Forrester Wave for hyper-converged infrastructure in the third quarter of 2016 based on product availability, vendor meetings, reference customer evaluations and a demonstration of the solutions. Solutions and vendors included in the Forrester Wave must have also "drawn significant interest from Forrester clients," the company said in its report.

Listed as "Strong Performers" in the Forrester Wave are Mountain View, Calif.-based Atlantis Computing; Mountain View, Calif.-based Gridstore, which last month renamed itself HyperGrid; Hopkinton, Mass.-based EMC; Hertzliya, Israel-based Stratoscale; Palo Alto, Calif.-based VMware; San Jose, Calif.-based Cisco; Palo Alto, Calif.-based HPE; and China-based Huawei.

Indianapolis-based Scale Computing was listed in the Forrester Wave as a Contender.