5 Companies That Came To Win This Week

The Week Ending May 16, 2014

This week's roundup of companies that came to win include Lenovo's plans for a data center push, Microsoft's latest cloud offering, a major acquisition in the Hadoop world, a significant technology advance by a flash storage vendor and the latest big-bucks venture financing win by a big data software developer.

Lenovo Takes Aim At Dell, HP In Server Arena

Lenovo promised channel partners attending this week's Lenovo Accelerate 2014 conference that new, high-performance ThinkServer products are on the way in the second half of this year. At the Orlando, Fla., event Lenovo executives rallied partners with the mantra "Attack the Rack" to encourage them to make a push into the data center and capture accounts from server rivals Dell and Hewlett-Packard.

Lenovo is doing something right: More than 80 percent of its $6 billion in North American commercial sales in the last year was led by partners who drove $800 million in new business.

Microsoft Boosts Partner Cloud Efforts With Secure Azure Connection

Microsoft this week launched a new service for connecting directly to its Azure cloud platform, offering its service provider partners a way to build secure and scalable hybrid cloud solutions for their customers.

The new ExpressRoute connects directly to Azure, providing access to cloud resources without sending data over the Internet. Customers choose an Internet service provider or data exchange and notify Microsoft, which then creates a dedicated connection. The new service should provide a boost to partners trying to convince reluctant customers to adopt cloud computing.

Pure Storage Offers All-Flash Storage With Replication

Pure Storage this week debuted a new release of its Purity software, which brings enterprise-grade replication capabilities to flash storage systems -- eliminating what up until now has been one of the biggest weaknesses of flash storage systems.

Many applications need disaster recovery and so require replication capabilities. The lack of replication has kept all-flash storage arrays out of some enterprise IT environments. Pure Storage's new Purity software, combined with new higher-capacity versions of its FlashArray series, should open new markets for the vendor and its channel partners.

Hortonworks Boosts Hadoop Security With Acquisition

Hortonworks made a savvy acquisition this week when it acquired XA Secure, a startup developer of security and governance technology for the Hadoop big data platform. By adding XA Secure's technology to its Hadoop-based Hortonworks Data Platform, the vendor strengthens its competitive hand against other Hadoop distributors.

But the Hadoop community also wins thanks to Hortonworks' promise to contribute the security technology to the Apache Software Foundation, which develops the core open source Hadoop software.

Analytics Software Developer Attensity Captures $90 Million In Financing

Attensity, a Salt Lake City-based developer of social media analysis software, was this week's winner in the venture funding sweepstakes when it closed on $90 million in financing. The money was provided by an international private equity fund and financial advisor company that Attensity didn't identify.

A pioneer in natural language processing and sentiment analysis, Attensity has leveraged its technology to become a leading player in social media analytics, analyzing Twitter data streams and other social media for brand reputation analysis, trend detection, and identifying business opportunities and threats.