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Commentary
7/14/2010
12:25 AM
Curt Monash
Curt Monash
Commentary
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More on Greenplum and EMC

Greenplum has ~ 140 customers, vs. ~65 five quarters ago, 100+ at year-end, and an acquisition rate of 12-15/quarter last fall. A typical "small" paying customer for Greenplum starts with 10-20 TB of data...

I talked with Ben Werther of Greenplum for about 40 minutes, which was my first post-merger Greenplum/EMC briefing. "Historical" highlights include:

  • Ben says Greenplum wasn't being shopped, by which he means Greenplum was out raising more capital and the fund-raising was going well. Note: Half or so of Greenplum's deals were subscription-priced, so it had weaker cash flow than it would have if it were doing equally well selling perpetual licenses.
  • However, joint engineering was also going well with, e.g., Greenplum CTO Luke Lonergan spending time at EMC facilities in Cork, Ireland. And one thing led to another...
  • Greenplum has ~ 140 customers, vs. ~65 five quarters ago, 100+ at year-end, and an acquisition rate of 12-15/quarter last fall.
  • A typical "small" paying customer for Greenplum starts with 10-20 TB of data.
  • Greenplum Chorus isn't generally available yet, with rollout energy being focused on Greenplum 4.0. Note: As important as it is for overall industry direction, Greenplum Chorus is a product which won't be a terribly big deal in Release 1 anyway.
Highlights looking forward include:
  • When I challenged him, Ben sounded quite optimistic that Pat Gelsinger will immunize Greenplum against and generally counteract some of EMC's traditionally stifling bureaucracy. (My words, of course, not his.)
  • The initial Greenplum/EMC product vision appears truly centered around "private cloud," specifically including Greenplum, VMware, and EMC storage arrays.
  • Some other areas of potential Greenplum/EMC technical synergy I think are cool obviously haven't been seriously addressed yet.
  • Based on what I heard from Ben about the aura around the deal and also on what I know of the individual executives at Greenplum, I think each of them is a good bet to stick around EMC for a while. (That's on average. Of course, it would be surprising if 100% of them stayed around very long.) Basically, there's at least a chance EMC/Greenplum will do some pretty cool stuff, and most of the guys will probably stick around to see if that actually starts to happen.*
*Also, when they do eventually leave, they'll surely say things to the effect "The cool stuff is well underway; my work here is done." That party line is almost guaranteed, no matter how things unfold in reality.Greenplum has ~ 140 customers, vs. ~65 five quarters ago, 100+ at year-end, and an acquisition rate of 12-15/quarter last fall. A typical "small" paying customer for Greenplum starts with 10-20 TB of data...

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