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NetApp, moving up and shifting left

spot and instaclustr

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Anthony Lye
Anthony Lye

“Leader” and “Outperformer” are two recent descriptions of NetApp that I am particularly proud of.GigaOm Radar for Cloud Resource Optimization. Why? They describe our abilities to innovate, reimagine and obsess about our customers’ success. The best thing about that is our ‘space’ is continually expanding—and at a tremendous pace, a space built by a combination of good strategy and great execution. We are continuing our tradition of leaning into change, pioneering industry firsts and helping customers manage and release applications at speed. We help them go fast by optimizing their cloud costs and securing their cloud configurations.

The Continuous Optimization of Information Technology is our business

NetApp has been in the optimization business since our earliest days, and we are building on the legacy begun by our founder Dave Hitz. We were the leader in storage optimization before anyone else thought of it. In fact, people thought we were radical for trying to help customers optimize their storage, including features like deduplication and compression for free, helping them to continuously reduce their spend while maintaining enterprise service level agreements. But what it did was build trust, the most powerful currency in business. Dave was right. We earned it, and we are continuing to build trust with decades-long customers and with newer cloud-native customers. Our cloud mission extends our on-premises mission to deliver more cloud at less cost.

It’s time to move up and shift left

We have just announced our intent to acquire Instaclustr, a leading platform for open-source databases, pipelines, and workflow applications delivered as a service. This acquisition comes at a time when customers are rapidly building applications with ever more complexity, increasing both cost and risk. Customers need to automate and optimize everything. Moving up NetApp will serve optimized and secured databases, data pipelines, AI/ML, and workflow solutions for application centric teams driving digital transformations. That is exactly what Instaclustr will allow us to deliver.

This acquisition allows us to extend our value proposition up to PaaS and (shift) left toward to the application developers through the newer DevOps teams.

spot and instaclustr

PaaS is the next frontier of continuous optimization

For nearly 30 years, we have been the primary storage platform for databases on premises. With Azure NetApp Files, AWS FSx for NetApp ONTAP and CVS for Google Cloud, we are the primary storage for databases in the public clouds. The acquisition of Instaclustr is a strategic next step for NetApp; to do more for the customer, simplify the experience, continuously optimize, and secure the platform so customers don’t have to themselves!

This acquisition demonstrates our commitment to application driven digital transformations. We’ve made a series of strategic acquisitions including Spot, CloudCheckr and Fylamynt to deliver FinOps. And with Cloud Hawk, Cloud Secure and CloudCheckr, we now deliver SecOps. We deliver solutions for our customers’ most pressing cloud needs—scale, performance, speed, efficiency, security and cost. This move gives our customers more cloud at less cost! It shows our leadership, our vision of Spot as the most comprehensive platform for CloudOps.  

During the past five years, we have moved from being a leader in on-premises storage to becoming a leader in cloud storage with added data services. With Spot, we bridged from a storage company to a Cloud Operations platform combining storage with compute. We have since moved up from our foundations to platform solutions with Spot PC for Desktop as a Service and Spot Ocean for Apache Spark as a service. We went from nearly zero, 5 years ago to $469M in ARR (Q3 FY22) with a new commitment to $2B of ARR ending FY26.

Instaclustr allows us to build out our full PaaS

With Instaclustr, we can provide a platform to run, optimize and secure multiple open-source databases, data pipelines and workflows. We will offer an open and extensible platform as a service, empowering application teams to build and deploy innovations at speed. We’re in the optimization business now more than ever and our customers have everything to gain. NetApp and Instaclustr will deliver our platform as a service for both public clouds and private clouds.

And this is just the beginning. I want to say, “You haven’t seen anything yet.” But you have. You’ve seen us evolve rapidly from a trusted on-premises storage company to a cloud-led, data-centric software company and now an open platform as a service company, powered by the best infrastructure services!

*The Instaclustr acquisition is subject to customary closing conditions and is expected to close in the first quarter of fiscal 2023

Anthony Lye

Anthony Lye is executive vice president and general manager of the Public Cloud Services business for NetApp. He is responsible for the strategy and execution to further NetApp’s cloud innovation across public cloud, hybrid cloud, and hyperscaler models and to establish the company as the undisputed leader in managing data in a cloud-integrated world.

Anthony brings more than 25 years of diverse leadership experience to NetApp, spanning roles in development, product management, marketing and sales, and as a high-tech CEO twice. He has focused primarily on cloud innovation for the past 15 years, most recently as the executive vice president and chief cloud officer at Guidewire Software, and at Oracle where he was the senior vice president and general manager of CRM. His background includes leading teams worldwide and hands-on experience building applications and platforms working directly with the developer community.

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