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‘A 90,000 Person Startup’: 5 Things You Need To Know About Kyndryl’s Operating Model

Wade Tyler Millward

“I’m hoping that because of the existing relationship with GTS (Global Technical Services), we’ll continue to work with them (Kyndryl),” Mark Wyllie, CEO of Boca Raton, Fla.-based IBM partner Flagship Solutions Group, tells CRN. “It could provide more opportunities for us than we have today. They need partners now more than ever.”

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With the spin-off of IBM’s Global Technology Services business set to be completed by the end of this year, executives for the forthcoming company, Kyndryl, provided insights into its operating model and global structure on Thursday.

CEO Martin Schroeter said in a statement Thursday that Kyndryl will benefit from IBM’s large existing employee base and technical knowhow.

“We are fortunate as a 90,000-person ‘start-up’ to have extraordinary global talent, from IBM Fellows and distinguished engineers to experts at service delivery centers, working with deep skills and more than 3,000 patents that help innovate with our customers,” Schroeter said. ”Over time, we’ll be showing all Kyndryls how they contribute to advancing the vital systems that our customers depend on.”

Mark Wyllie, CEO of Boca Raton, Fla.-based IBM partner Flagship Solutions Group, told CRN that Kyndryl could present an opportunity for partners brought on to help with deals requiring specialization. The marketplace for digital transformation is so large and growing that partners and Kyndryl might find plenty of opportunities to collaborate.

“I’m hoping that because of the existing relationship with GTS (Global Technical Services), we’ll continue to work with them (Kyndryl),” Wyllie said. “It could provide more opportunities for us than we have today. They need partners now more than ever.”

From practice areas including cloud and security and a leadership team that includes more than just migrating IBM executives, here’s what you need to know about Kyndryl.

Kyndryl An Opportunity For Partners?

Kyndryl CEO Martin Schroeter said in a LinkedIn post Thursday that Kyndryl partners should expect the company to “work with you to deepen our capabilities and bring the best of our expanded ecosystem to our customers.”

“We understand what it takes to build and run secure and complex technology environments, and our partners will be able to leverage that experience as we support customers with speed and the best technology solutions,” he said.

He added: “Nothing will change with the IBM Global Technology Services business until after responsibility passes to the Kyndryl team.” IBM still expects to complete the spin off by the end of the year, according to the statement.

IBM itself has delivered partner-friendly messages over the years, with CEO Arvind Krishna saying in a letter to investors earlier this year that IBM has “elevated the role of partners” to help with speed up hybrid cloud consumption.

“We are investing $1 billion in our ecosystem so that our partners can play a much bigger role in fulfilling the many needs of our clients,” Krishna wrote.

Six Managed Services Practices

Kyndryl will focus on six global managed services practices. Those areas are cloud; digital workplace; security and resiliency; network and edge; core enterprise and zCloud; and applications, data and artificial intelligence (AI).

IBM has invested heavily in its own cloud computing and AI business lines. In June, it closed its acquisition of Turbonomic, a developer of application resource management and network performance management software, and is preparing to combine it with other IBM technologies to provide clients with application-centric AIOps, or artificial intelligence for IT operations, offerings.

Advisory And Implementation Services, Too

Along with the six practice areas, Kyndryl will offer an advisory and implementation services practice. The goal of this group is to advise customers on digital environments and advanced technology adoption and integration.

Kyndryl’s advisory practice comes at a time of heightened digital transformation coming out of the global pandemic and move to remote work. In March, IBM CEO Arvind Krishna said in a letter to investors that he expects the amount of digital transformation set to take place over the next two to three years would have taken far longer to accomplish if it wasn’t for the events set into motion in 2020.

“What we have witnessed over the past year is an acceleration of digital transformation,” Krishna said. “Every company in every industry wants to build a much stronger digital foundation to fundamentally change the way its business works. There is no going back. In the next two to three years, we expect to see digital transformation at a rate that, before 2020, we thought would take 5 to 10 years.”

Geographical Strategy Beefed Up

New York-based Kyndryl named Matt Milton as president of Kyndryl United States along with nine other regional leaders of markets that represent more than 75 percent of Kyndryl’s revenue.

Tosca Colangeli is president of Kyndryl United Kingdom and Ireland. Xerxes Cooper is president of Kyndryl Canada. Paolo Degl‘Innocenti is president of Kyndryl Italy. Luis Roca Fernandez is president of Kyndryl Spain and Portugal. Markus Koerner is president of Kyndryl Germany. Kerry Purcell is president of Kyndryl Australia and New Zealand. Philippe Roncati is president of Kyndryl France. Lingraju Sawkar is president of Kyndryl India. Takashi Uesaka is president of Kyndryl Japan. And Rick Ruiz, as Kyndryl’s strategic markets president, will lead activities in all other countries.

Kyndryl Recruiting Outsiders, IBMers In Exec Ranks

Kyndryl’s ranks are full of outgoing IBM executives, but incoming CIO Michael Bradshaw comes from NBCUniversal Media. Bradshaw did, however, previously spent 23 years with IBM, leaving in 2010 as vice president of IT infrastructure optimization, according to his LinkedIn profile.

Kyndryl previously announced the appointment of Antoine Shagoury (pictured), formerly the CIO at State Street Corp. and the London Stock Exchange, to be the chief technology officer at its Kyndryl managed infrastructure business spin-off.

IBM previously picked Elly Keinan as group president of Kyndryl. Keinan was most recently a partner with Pitango Venture Capital, Israel’s leading venture capital group. But he previously worked as general manager of IBM North America, general manager of IBM Latin America, and chairman of IBM Japan, during his 30 year tech career.

Wade Tyler Millward

Wade Tyler Millward is an associate editor covering cloud computing and the channel partner programs of Microsoft, IBM, Red Hat, Oracle, Salesforce, Citrix and other cloud vendors. He can be reached at wmillward@thechannelcompany.com.

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