Oracle names new cloud infrastructure chief, indicators broader ambitions to problem Amazon

Six-year Oracle veteran Clay Magouyrk is the brand new govt vp in control of Oracle Cloud Infrastructure, primarily based in Seattle, reporting to co-founder Larry Ellison, govt chairman and chief know-how officer. (Picture by Marc Fiorito / Gamma 9 Pictures, by way of Oracle.)

Oracle wasn’t the primary large tech firm to supply public cloud computing infrastructure, or the second, or the third. When Oracle Cloud Infrastructure launched in 2016, aiming to compete in opposition to the likes of Amazon Internet Providers, Microsoft Azure and Google Cloud, it virtually redefined the idea of minimally viable product, or MVP — with only one cloud area and a handful of cloud companies.

“We were definitely minimal,” recollects Oracle govt Clay Magouyrk. “I don’t think we were viable at the time, but we had an MP … and we just kept working.”

Magouyrk, who was there initially, has been named the brand new govt vp in control of Oracle Cloud Infrastructure, primarily based in Seattle, main a group of 1000’s globally. His predecessor, Don Johnson, has taken on a brand new function that factors to the longtime database firm’s broader ambitions within the cloud.

4 years after Oracle Cloud Infrastructure’s launch, Magouyrk says, quite a bit has modified. Oracle announced its 25th cloud region last week, and says it plans so as to add eleven extra by this time subsequent yr. The corporate turned heads when it introduced fast-growing video conferencing firm Zoom as a cloud customer in April. (It additionally drew the attention of Amazon Web Services, which was fast to notice that it nonetheless serves nearly all of Zoom’s public cloud workloads.)

In a recent report, analysts from analysis agency Gartner mentioned firms ought to take into account Oracle a “viable option” when evaluating public cloud suppliers.

Synergy Analysis Group knowledge exhibits Amazon accounting for a 3rd of worldwide cloud spending of $30 billion within the second quarter, with Oracle in single digits. (Synergy Analysis Group Chart)

The Redwood Shores, Calif., firm remains to be a small participant within the cloud, with single-digit market share, and it continues to play catch-up on a wide range of fronts. That very same Gartner report, for instance, additionally cautioned that Oracle Cloud Infrastructure has “a very limited ecosystem of third-party management software.”

However Oracle’s late begin in cloud infrastructure got here with a bonus that’s now changing into extra obvious, contends Magouyrk. Whereas Amazon Internet Providers was initially focused to startups and small groups, earlier than increasing to serve large company clients, Oracle Cloud Infrastructure was conceived later, when the bigger potential of the cloud was clear.

“When you know that’s where you’re going,” he mentioned, “you build things differently.”

A current instance: the launch of “Oracle Dedicated Region Cloud@Customer,” which makes all of Oracle’s cloud companies out there as a totally managed cloud area in its clients’ knowledge facilities. Larry Ellison, Oracle govt chairman, CTO and co-founder, described the initiative as “a first in the cloud industry.”

Whereas such proclamations from Ellison are widespread, even a number of the firm’s critics called the move surprising and unique.

Magouyrk, who joined Oracle six years in the past from Amazon to assist construct and launch Oracle Cloud Infrastructure, led the group that developed Devoted Area Cloud@Buyer. Now the 33-year-old govt is taking up an even bigger function as the chief in control of Oracle Cloud Infrastructure, reporting to Ellison.

Don Johnson, former govt vp of Oracle Cloud Infrastructure, will stay on the firm, specializing in cloud initiatives past OCI. (GeekWire File Picture / Todd Bishop)

Magouyrk succeeds Johnson, the unique Oracle Cloud Infrastructure chief, whose current initiatives have included a partnership with longtime Oracle rival Microsoft. Johnson mentioned in a June 30 e-mail to his group that he’ll stay at Oracle, reporting to Ellison and specializing in the corporate’s broader cloud mission.

“This has been the eventual plan for a long time,” Johnson wrote within the memo. “Clay was the first person I hired here at Oracle, we built OCI together and have been driving it in tandem from the start. As he’s stepped into a broadening leadership role, steering both technology and the business, it was clear that Clay is the right person to lead OCI into the future.”

In explaining his new function, Johnson signaled Oracle’s greater ambitions.

“Oracle’s position in the cloud landscape, simplistically, is that we offer a marriage of the best cloud infrastructure, and leading data platform, together with the most pervasive cloud applications. No one else does this, or realistically, can do this as we can. The full realization of this vision is that Oracle provides the most complete cloud platform to build on and to operate your entire business – a business platform, an infrastructure platform, a data platform, a development platform.”

Johnson mentioned Oracle Cloud Infrastructure has the potential to turn into “an enormous business, a ubiquitous platform that customers around the world will build on and use to operate their businesses.”

The corporate is a great distance from that proper now, with market share that pales compared to Amazon, Microsoft and Google, which collectively management 60% of the market, according to Synergy Research.

Gartner places Oracle Cloud Infrastructure’s market share at 3%, predicting that its market share might not less than double by 2025.

However Oracle is falling quick in a key measure of future development, says Seattle-area angel investor Charles Fitzgerald, who watches the cloud trade carefully and retains an in depth eye on capital expenditures, or CapEx, that fund the build-out of the key cloud platforms. His calculations show a 20% decline in Oracle’s annual capital expenditures over the past two years.

Oracle’s annual cloud spending, courtesy Charles Fitzgerald, initially revealed in his put up, Follow the CAPEX: Clown Watch

“CAPEX doesn’t lie,” mentioned Fitzgerald by way of e-mail this week. “Oracle’s CAPEX has been declining in absolute and relative terms since 2017. Whatever the marketing spin, they are falling further and further behind the real hyperscale clouds.”

In an interview, Magouyrk known as capital expenditures “the wrong conversation to have.” Clients, he mentioned, need to know supplier has the areas and capability to serve their wants.

“Zoom doesn’t care how much CapEx I spent, what Zoom cared about is that they were able to show up, and I was able to give them the capacity they needed in all the regions they needed,” Magouyrk mentioned. “In my mind, if you’re asking me about CapEx, you’ve missed the point of the cloud. My job is to provide a service so that you don’t have to worry about how much CapEx is being spent.”

Oracle Cloud Infrastructure relies in downtown Seattle, considered one of a number of massive cloud engineering facilities which have helped to present the area the nickname “Cloud City.” Google Cloud opened a brand new engineering outpost final yr on the sting of the Amazon headquarters. Microsoft Azure relies throughout Lake Washington in Redmond.

Magouyrk (pronounced ma-gwork) was born in Japan whereas his dad was serving within the U.S. Air Drive, and lived in states together with Maryland and Alabama earlier than ending up in Memphis for his highschool and faculty years.

He began writing software program when he was a child, following within the footsteps of his dad, a software program developer. He graduated from the College of Memphis with an electrical engineering diploma and moved to Seattle in 2008 for a task at Amazon, staying there six years earlier than going to Oracle.

“The thing I love about programming is that the barrier to entry is so very low,” Magouyrk mentioned. “If you can afford a few-hundred-dollar computer, you now have the same level of tools as the most advanced people in the entire world. That’s not true for a lot of sciences. It’s not true for a lot of engineering.”

“The only thing holding you back,” he mentioned, “is what’s in your brain and how much you’re willing to work.”

That precept additionally applies to his new function, he mentioned, and to Oracle’s ambitions within the cloud.

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