Once the deal closes, OVH will operate vCloud Air Powered by OVH and leverage VMware’s hybrid cloud software. OVH will also work closely with VMware on customer support. During a conference call with media, OVH executives said that vCloud Air customers will continue to work with the same operations team and the same customer support team.
OVH is a long-time vCloud Air partner and has more than 200,000 VMs from thousands of customers running VMware vSphere private cloud. The company is a well-known European cloud provider and has more than 1 million customers and 260,000 servers deployed.
But OVH isn’t a household name in the U.S. market, something the company hopes to change. It recently hired Russ Reeder as president and CEO of OVH U.S. Reeder is charged with expanding the company’s presence here. This follows a $250 million investment by KKR and TowerBrook in OVH to fund the company’s U.S. expansion and also fund the construction of data centers in Vint Hill, Virginia, and Hillsboro, Oregon.
Reeder said that he is focused on building the U.S. business, and that the acquisition of vCloud Air is going to help OVH be a disruptive brand. “OVH is a very disruptive brand globally. We believe we can do it here through innovation,” Reeder said.
VMware noted that this transaction does not change the company’s previously issued financial guidance for the first quarter and the full fiscal year 2018.
vCloud Air was originally touted as VMware’s public cloud service and was designed as a way for customers to manage hybrid clouds. But about a year ago VMware changed its tune and said that vCloud Air’s main focus going forward would be to provide technology for partner-run clouds instead of being a public cloud service.
The move away from providing public cloud services was thought to be a smart one as VMware and others were facing increased competition from Amazon Web Services (AWS). AWS has been aggressively winning business from enterprises by offering to move their applications and data to its own cloud data centers.
When asked how OVH plans to compete against AWS and others, Reeder said that although the U.S. is the largest and most mature public cloud market, he believes that customers are looking for an alternative. “We want to come into this space and offer the best product at the best value. We will have a lower price with customer support and SLAs [service level agreements],” Reeder said.