Photo: VMworld 2012 live stream
During the opening keynote at the VMware’s customer conference in San Francisco, the outgoing CEO, Paul Maritz, officially turned the company over to the new chief executive, Pat Gelsinger.When the company announced this move last month, it came as a shock. But it may turn out to be a positive for VMware and EMC, the enterprise-hardware company which owns a controlling stake in it.
Maritz is moving over to EMC s chief strategist. Gelsinger, who was EMC’s president and COO, took on the CEO role at VMware. Many viewed this as setting up Maritz as heir apparent at EMC.
Meanwhile, Gelsinger’s move could be viewed as a promotion, too, since he’s now running a publicly traded company. Gelsinger was responsible for much of EMC and VMware’s success, managing critical partnerships such as the one with Cisco.
“Pat is a passionate guy,” said Maritz. “No one will accuse him of being laid-back.”
Attendees cheered as Maritz took a seat offstage to watch the keynote. Maritz, who came from Microsoft, grew VMware from a young public company that was under attack by his former employer into one of the most important enterprise vendors in the world.
Some 60% of Intel servers are now using virtualized servers, a technology that VMware helped popularise, according to market researchers. Of those, 80% use VMware. It has 400,000 customers—large, medium-sized, and small.
In other words, VMware has won its market under Maritz. Gelsinger’s job will be to find the next big growth area.