Broadcom’s Acquisition Of VMware: A New Dawn For Managed Service Providers

In the rapidly evolving tech landscape, Broadcom’s acquisition of VMware stands out as a landmark event, signaling significant changes for Managed Service Providers (MSPs) across the globe. This strategic move not only reshapes the existing virtualization and cloud computing markets, but also sets a new course for smaller MSPs navigating these changes. The acquisition underscores a deliberate strategy by Broadcom to deepen its penetration into enterprise software solutions, leveraging VMware’s stronghold in virtualization and cloud services. As the industry adjusts to this new reality, understanding the ramifications and opportunities arising from this acquisition becomes paramount for MSPs.

Strategic Implications of the Acquisition

Broadcom’s decision to acquire VMware marks a calculated step towards enhancing its presence in the competitive enterprise software domain. VMware, with its robust portfolio in virtualization and cloud computing, represents a critical asset for Broadcom, promising to unlock synergies between Broadcom’s semiconductor prowess and VMware’s software capabilities. This union is poised to foster innovation and expansion, potentially altering the landscape of technology solutions and services.

Navigating Licensing and Pricing Transformations

A pivotal aspect of the acquisition is the shift in VMware’s licensing model under Broadcom’s stewardship. Moving away from the previously complex, points-based Partner Connect program, Broadcom introduced a streamlined licensing approach through its VMware White Label Program. This new model simplifies licensing to a single SKU – the VMware Cloud Foundation (VCF) – marking a significant departure from the cafeteria-style options previously available.

Furthermore, the pricing structure is shifting from a multifaceted calculation method to a more straightforward, SKU-based pricing model. This simplification aims to make the licensing process more accessible and manageable for MSPs, reducing complexity in how services are priced and consumed.

Navigating The New VMware Landscape Post-Broadcom Acquisition

The recent acquisition of VMware by Broadcom is transforming the cloud computing landscape, sparking widespread debate and concern. This strategic shift is sending tremors across the industry, marking a significant transition not just for VMware, but also for its extensive network of over 10,000 Managed Service Providers (MSPs) and resellers, now narrowed down to a select 500. This dramatic consolidation puts many longstanding VMware partners in a precarious position, as they face the daunting prospect of navigating uncharted territories without clear guidance. Despite the initial turbulence, a deeper analysis reveals a landscape rife with new possibilities and avenues for adaptation and growth.

Redefining Partnerships in the VMware Ecosystem

Broadcom’s overhaul of VMware’s partnership model marks a pivotal departure from traditional practices, fundamentally altering the landscape of collaboration and service provision within the cloud computing industry. This strategic shift is set to draw a clear line between entities that can adapt to the new dynamics and those at risk of marginalization. With a significantly pruned list of partners offering enhanced services, securing necessary support is becoming even more challenging for enterprises. As VMware pivots towards more direct interactions with its clients, former allies and competitors accustomed to the previous model may find it challenging to secure their place in the evolved ecosystem.

The amendments to the VMware Cloud Connect Partner Program, effective May 2024, promise to reshape the market through several critical changes:

  • Transitioning to a subscription-based licensing model from the traditional perpetual licenses.
  • Shifting from RAM-based to CPU core-based pricing, altering cost structures.
  • Introducing a constrained selection of new product bundles, potentially complicating service offerings.
  • Encouraging the search for alternative licensing and service providers as the pool of VMware partners narrows.

These adjustments are not merely operational; they signal a significant shift in strategy that could redefine market participation and competitive dynamics moving forward.

Navigating the New VMware Landscape: Challenges and Opportunities for Businesses

The acquisition of VMware by Broadcom poses significant challenges for VMware’s competitors and the 10,000+ partners not selected to advance in their premier partnership tier. This development triggers a multifaceted ripple effect across the cloud computing industry:

  • Market Reorganization: The new partnership tier structure potentially leaves many MSPs and resellers without their former benefits, compelling them to reassess their strategies.
  • Competitive Dynamics: With VMware under Broadcom, competitors face a more unified and potentially formidable competitor in cloud and virtualization arenas.
  • Innovation and Adaptation: Organizations slow to innovate or adjust may struggle to stay relevant within a swiftly changing market.

For businesses leveraging VMware, the pivotal changes arriving in May 2024 could disrupt their cloud strategies and operational dynamics, possibly leading to increased costs. The inability of many Managed Service Providers (MSPs) and Cloud Service Providers (CSPs) to continue reselling or supporting VMware post-May implies potential disruptions and migrations to alternative platforms, alongside the challenge of adapting to a new licensing model and cost structure.

However, this transition also presents opportunities to modernize cloud infrastructure and uncover cost-effective solutions. Choosing a trusted cloud and security advisor, particularly from among the premier VMware Cloud Service Provider Partners, is crucial for navigating these changes. Such a partner can offer:

  • Seamless Migration: Assistance in moving to an optimal cloud solution, whether that’s a secure private, public, or hybrid cloud.
  • Expert VMware Support: Continuous, professional support to ensure existing VMware environments remain efficient and applications optimized.
  • Cost-Saving Optimization: A cloud-agnostic approach to finding the most efficient solutions for an organization’s specific needs.

Despite the challenges of VMware’s strategic shift, avenues for successful navigation exist:

  • Form Strategic Alliances: New or strengthened alliances, especially with major Broadcom program participants, can open new opportunities for white labeling services from the premier VMware partners.
  • Diversify Offerings: Exploring alternative revenue streams, such as OpenStack or Nutanix, can reduce reliance on any single vendor or model. However, it’s important to note OpenStack’s complexity and Nutanix’s higher costs.
  • Focus on Core Competencies: Concentrating on what a firm does best can enhance market position and attract new clientele.

Seize the Moment: Forge Strategic Partnerships Now

The acquisition of VMware by Broadcom marks a pivotal turn in the cloud computing world, reshaping the industry’s framework and signaling a call to action for smaller MSPs, CSPs, and their customers. If you find your business on the fringes of this new VMware ecosystem, or if you are a customer of one of these smaller MSPs, the imperative is clear: seek adaptation immediately, embrace innovation, and act swiftly. Now is the crucial moment to identify and align with strong, credible partners who have secured their place within VMware’s updated partnership program.

This transformative period presents an unparalleled opportunity for smaller service providers to forge alliances with those in the premier tier of VMware’s partner network. Aligning with partners that share your values and commitment to innovation can unlock a wealth of benefits in this evolving landscape, enabling you to navigate market uncertainties with confidence and agility.

For smaller MSPs and CSPs, the message is even more urgent: explore strategic partnerships today to enhance your resilience, adaptability, and long-term success in a sector where change is the only constant. By proactively joining forces with established, values-aligned VMware partners, your business can thrive amidst transformation, equipped to face the challenges and seize the opportunities of tomorrow’s cloud computing domain.

This article was originally published in Forbes, please follow me on LinkedIn.

Michigan Mutual Gains Uptime through Ntirety Managed Services

Michigan Mutual is a mortgage broker founded in 1992 by brothers Mark and Hale Walker. Over the past few decades, the business has expanded across 35 states and now has a total of 100 Mortgage Loan Advisors. As a company that handles financial information, being able to quickly communicate with customers while keeping personal data secure is a top priority and core to their value proposition. The challenge is having all the right tools and technology in place to compete with big players and some nimble smaller ones. 

Michigan Mutual had to move their back-office IT servers from their office suite to a data center that they owned and operated. Over time their server, storage, and network set-up became outdated.  A decision had to be made on how to make sure data management was as efficient as possible in the spring of 2017. 

To free up their time, and increase availability and security, Michigan Mutual turned to Ntirety for a virtual desktop services solution (VDI) and moved everything from their own data center to be on Ntirety’s VDI and DR infrastructure. The VDI and on-prem DR Solution moved to Ntirety in August 2017. In June 2018 their applications and back-office were also moved to be fully handled by Ntirety. 

With Ntirety onboard, the mortgage company now has more uptime and availability to focus on other business operations. The migration to Ntirety’s data center gives the Michigan Mutual team more servers and desktops that are available all the time and running at peak performance. 

Centralized administration and cloud desktop means that regardless of what happens in any individual area, employees can just go somewhere that has internet, and they’re back up and running. 

“We have been fortunate in the fact that the Ntirety team has been able to focus and to get attention to things quickly to help us get results,” Michigan Mutual EVP and CIO Bruce Clarke said. 

The reliability, communication and support from Ntirety has helped Michigan Mutual to feel valued as a customer and feel confident in the Ntirety solution. That confidence allows the Michigan Mutual team to stay focused on being competitive in the market rather than worrying about managing their infrastructure. 

Read the full case study here for more details about how the Ntirety solution helped Michigan Mutual gain uptime.