Partner-led orders, which soared 116% on an annualized basis in HPE’s fiscal Q1, now account for 29% of all GreenLake revenue, up from 18% a year ago. SMB partners, moreover, now generate 30% of through-channel sales. “That’s up 20 points year over year,” Hope says. The company is staffing up to sustain that momentum.
“We’re adding specialists on the channel side to be able to go on sales calls with partners to have those conversations,” Hope notes.
GreenLake is designed to make consuming and managing private cloud resources as simple as buying and operating public cloud resources. Though global sales of public cloud infrastructure climbed a projected 16.7% last year to $52.7 billion, according to IDC, HPE and many others expect hybrid environments to dominate the cloud landscape for the foreseeable future.
“Some workloads just can’t move to the [public] cloud,” Hope says, due to compliance requirements, latency concerns, and other issues. Businesses all want the public cloud purchasing and management experience just the same, he continues.
Hope gives COVID-19 partial credit for fueling GreenLake’s recent growth, especially among SMBs. “The whole work from home thing caught everybody by surprise,” he says. “I’m certainly speculating, but we’re coming down market faster because the SMB and mid-market customers have had to adapt as quick if not quicker than the big customers. They didn’t have the luxury of already having a lot of this infrastructure in place.”
HPE also announced updates to GreenLake-based offerings from its Aruba unit today. GreenLake for Aruba, as it’s formally known, now offers higher rebate levels and incremental revenue opportunities across the ownership lifecycle. Partners will also have access to Aruba customer success managers tasked with helping customers deploy and use Aruba systems.
Demand for as-a-service hardware is spiking at present beyond HPE's customers. Dell Technologies recently said it will introduce a “substantial increase” in referral incentives for deals involving its Flex On Demand pay-per-use program in the fiscal year that began last month, and suggested that more offerings like the storage-as-a-service program it unveiled last October are on the way. Dell will also officially launch Project APEX, a long-term effort to unify its technology-as-a-service and consumption-based cloud computing programs under a common ordering and management experience, later this year.