HP Discover - Setting the Scene

Earlier this month, HP hosted its bi-annual customer conference – HP Discover – where nearly 11,000 HP customers and staff gathered together in Las Vegas. With 11,000 attendees to educate, inform and rally, there were more than 700 sessions, 285 technology demos, and over 500,000 square feet of space to amply accommodate everyone.

The general feeling going into the event was that HP was going to make some significant product announcements to strengthen its enterprise portfolio.

Meg Whitman's HP Discover Keynote Presentation

The theme for the event was “It’s time to build a better enterprise. Together.”

That might sound somewhat perplexing, because to many folks, Enterprise IT IS delivered by HP, so how was it proposing to make it better?

But surprisingly, just like its branding, HP is espousing a refreshing message in CEO Meg Whitman’s keynote:

"HP can help you manage in ways no other companies can. We've got a unique perspective because we created the old IT world, and we're part of creating the new one.... Believe me, Hewlett Packard is here to stay.”

She went on to say:

"No other company is making such strides in energy efficiency."

Which according to some- Power consumption is the number one cost in running datacenters so if HP can innovate significantly, there could be some serious room for capex vs. the generic servers that have become popular recently.

Whitman went on to talk about HP’s big four focus areas: Cloud, Mobility, Big Data and Security- positioning HP as the one company to take them all on.

Next up, why partner with HP?

"Technology is daunting," said Whitman. "We get what you are going through." She then went into a metaphor about how IT folks are just “normal” people, but when they get to work, they’re expected to be “superheroes”. Whitman thinks even superheroes need to work on a team- have backup and that’s what HP is for. Whitman continued in her keynote:

"If you remember nothing else, we are out to be the very best partner out there. We are here to build a better enterprise together with you. Challenge us."

Whitman also used this keynote to build trust and confidence in HP with the senior customer executives in the audience:

“We have strengthened our financial position and have stabilized our business."

I think we were all left wanting more detail - HP no doubt has the track record of being the Enterprise provider – and the details came out over the ensuing days.

As always the Mimecast stand on the show floor was buzzing from the open and it’s always great to speak to so many attendees about their cloud strategies and their plans for building a better enterprise. Together (with Mimecast!).

Thanks to HP for inviting me to cover HP Discover as a blogger - the hospitality was excellent and the conference informative. I'm already looking forward to seeing what the event holds later this year when it goes over to Spain!