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VMware COO: New GM Will Take End User Computing Business To '$2B And Beyond'

VMware COO Sanjay Poonen said his successor as the general manager of end user computing, Sumit Dhawan, is poised to take the business from more than $1 billion to '$2 billion and beyond.'

VMware COO Sanjay Poonen Tuesday told partners in an email blast that his hand-picked successor, Sumit Dhawan, is poised to take the End User Computing (EUC) business from more than $1 billion to "2 billion and beyond."

Poonen, who took the EUC business from $300 million to more than $1 billion in just three years, said he has been "grooming" Dhawan as his successor for the last few years.

In the email, Poonen informed partners directly for the first time about his move last month from general manager of the EUC business to COO of VMware.

[Related: VMware Enhances End-User Computing Capabilities With Improved Container Support, Better Mobility Management]

As COO, Poonen is now responsible for the $7 billion company's software business and all customer operations, including sales, marketing, consulting, ecosystem and portfolio product marketing.

"In my new role as COO, I look forward to driving customer-centric innovation and operational excellence at VMware - which is not just the 4th largest software company today - but is an incredibly dynamic company - with the most talented employees, loyal customers and force-multiplying partners in the industry – all of you!!!," said Poonen in the email.

Furthermore, he urged partners to establish an "active dialog" with Dhawan. "He's going to do a great job and will take EUC, to $2B and beyond!," wrote Poonen. "I will continue to be a strong EUC advocate, as we continue product innovation and share gains in the market."

That message was music to the ears of Jamie Shepard, senior vice president for healthcare and strategy for Lumenate, a Dallas-based solution provider and VMware channel partner which has been building a combined end-user and mobility practice since 2008.

"I wish this would've happened a year ago," Shepard told CRN. "VMware is now a year behind where it could have been, but it's still a year ahead of the rest of the industry."

Shepard and other partners expect big potential sales gains ahead in the VMware EUC business.

London, U.K.-based research firm Technavio, for its part, expects the market for virtual desktop infrastructure, a key component of the future of end-user computing, will enjoy a cumulative annual growth rate of over 27 percent between 2016 to 2020.

VMware has for the last several years been moving aggressively to match business customers' move to connected and mobile devices, and made a couple of key acquisitions, Shepard said. These included the VMware's 2013 buy of Desktone, a provider of desktop-as-a-service technology, and VMware's 2014 purchase of AirWatch, a provider of mobile device and application management technology.

The Desktone and AirWatch acquisitions were made while Poonen was managing VMware's EUC business.

"When VMware acquired AirWatch, it realized desktops were not just being used where they had traditionally been used," Shepard said. "They saw employees working all over the place, with a big mobile focus. Sanjay has proven to be a real stud in this market."

VMware with its Workspace One enterprise mobility management technology, which combines some its end-user computing technologies with things like security and reference architectures, is going beyond what others in the mobile workspace field like Microsoft, Google, and Amazon have done, Shepard said.

"This is an evolving space," he said. "It's the start of the evolution of mobility. That's why I wish the re-alignment of VMware's end-user computing business had been done a year ago."

VMware under Poonen knows the key to winning in the mobility market is not to build another virtual desktop, Shepard said. "It's about how to build everything around it," he said. "It's a disruptive business, and it's important to see how a company like VMware approaches it."

Neither Poonen nor Dhawan was available to provide more information.

However, in his email, Poonen wrote that VMware in three years turned its End-User Computing division from a $300-million business that was perceived as an industry "laggard" to a billion-dollar-business leading the market.

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