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“Fundamentally, we have a bigger plan for security,” says VMware COO Sanjay Poonen. “We felt it was the perfect time for us to come up with a disruptive play that was based on big data, was AI, and was cloud-based. There were only two companies doing it, CrowdStrike and Carbon Black. We felt Carbon Black was better integrated to us, had as good a product or better. We have a plan to integrate Carbon Black and make it intrinsic in a way that nobody else will do. We think this will transform the security industry that’s been broken today.”

Sanjay Poonen, COO of VMware, elaborates on how they plan to transform security and lead the containers movement currently going on in digital transformation. Poonen was interviewed by Jim Cramer on CNBC:

Containers Are A Movement Going On In Digital Transformation 

When you look at these types of transformational moments going on in digital transformation, these happen once every 10 to 20 years. VMware is the company that invented the virtual machine and for the last 20 years, we’ve created a million jobs in that part of infrastructure. There is a movement going on in digital transformation right now called containers. We believe it’s our birthright to own that movement. There will be potentially tens of millions of jobs among developers created on top of this virtual machine. 

Think of the virtual machine sort of like the ship and containers like the things on top of it. In the 1950s containers completely transformed ships and VMware created the ship. These containers are going to allow apps to be fundamentally transformed. We found as we thought about this that this was the right time to do it and it was our birthright to do it better than anybody else. Why not take those three thousand people in Pivotal and $750 million in revenue and turbocharge the next ten years of VMware, not just in virtual machines and virtualization in the path to the cloud, which is the first C, but the other C is containers. We think that’s a big part.

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We’re A Go-To-Market Machine

Pivotal (is more valuable than the market initially believed) for two reasons. They’ve refactored their product which now sits completely on Kubernetes. If you don’t know what it is, it’s a sort of the big open-source container movement. And their go-to-market engine probably stuttered a little bit. But that’s what VMware does well. We’re a go-to-market machine. We’ll bring them in and accelerate this to our 500,000 customers. We feel good when we get a good product in the hands of our good go-to-market machine. I think we can accelerate it. 

At VMware, no one person does it, it takes a village but also our partners like Dell and the ecosystem also. VMware has 75,000 partners who love us. We’re going to take this to those ecosystem partners. We have a big tent of system integrators and they’re excited about this. We branded the entire thing, that’s the other thing we’ve done pretty well. Tenzo, which is the Japanese word for containers, we’re doing big ads in New York, San Francisco, and London Airports. This is a play on the word VMware that says ContainerWare. We’re not changing the name of the company but we’re going big in containers and that’s the key message.

We Have a Bigger Plan For Security

Fundamentally, we have a bigger plan for security.  Let me just walk you through a quick understanding of the strategy. There are a lot of parallels with security and healthcare. My mom’s a doctor. Imagine you went to a doctor and you asked her how do you get well and she said you have to eat 5,000 tablets. Eating one every 30 seconds would take you a couple of weeks to do. That’s what the security industry is today. It’s 5,000 vendors, broken, with lots of different agents bloated on people’s laptops, lots of alerts showing up, and manual labor.

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We look at this and say there’s a fundamentally new way to do it, which is to make security intrinsic to your diet. You eat your vegetables, your fruit, you drink your water, brush your teeth, and that’s what we’re doing with security. We are making it part of our platform. 

A Disruptive Play Based On Big Data, AI, and Cloud-Based

We’ve been doing very well in network security around the NSX product but endpoint security and workload security we didn’t have much there. We had Workspace ONE, our AirWatch related product, and we found that many of these endpoint security players were kind of in a little internal turmoil. Symantec got bought by Broadcom. McAfee got bought by Intel and then was spun out again. We felt it was the perfect time for us to come up with a disruptive play that was based on big data, was AI, and was cloud-based.

There were only two companies doing it, CrowdStrike and Carbon Black. We felt Carbon Black was better integrated to us, had as good a product or better, and we intend to acquire them. The acquisition hasn’t yet closed. We have a plan to integrate this and make it intrinsic in a way that nobody else will do. We laid that out at VMworld. We think this will transform the security industry that’s been broken today.

VMware COO Sanjay Poonen: We Have a Bigger Plan For Security



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