StorMagic enters HPE Complete program as StoreVirtual replacement

With HPE having end-of-lifed their StoreVirtual family, StorMagic has been selected as a replacement for the HPE StoreVirtual VSA in edge deployments where HPE SimpliVity would be overkill.

Brian Grainger, StorMagic’s CRO

Edge-focused hyperconverged infrastructure [HCI] vendor StorMagic has expanded their strategic partnership with Hewlett Packard Enterprise [HPE], joining the HPE Complete program which integrates third-party vendors within HPE’s Go-to-Market strategy. This also extends StorMagic’s strategy of strategic Go-to-Market partnerships with server vendors, following Lenovo, Cisco and Dell EMC.

The HPE Complete builds on a partnership announced late last year, which saw StorMagic join HPE’s Partner Ready for Technology Partner Program as a Silver tier member, as well as the announcement of a validated integration between StorMagic’s virtual SvSAN software and HPE DL325 and DL360 ProLiant Gen10 rack servers. While StorMagic’s server OEM partners typically have HCI products of their own, they are more upmarket than StorMagic, which specializes in turning small two-server edge deployments into highly available shared storage with SvSAN, both for SMBs and larger enterprise edge deployments.

When StorMagic and HPE partnered last year, StorMagic was not a part of the HPE Complete program, so that it did not have the same go-to-market component in the relationship, such as being on the price lists,  that it did with the other server vendors. That is what has now changed.

“Becoming part of HPE Complete is a long journey,” said Brian Grainger, StorMagic’s CRO. “There was a long vetting period for testing and validation and financial verification. It took months and months.  It wasn’t a foregone conclusion that we would be part of Complete.”

That was however StorMagic’s objective.

“That was my strategy, which was part of building relationships with all the Tier One server companies,” Grainger said. “HPE completes that entire journey for us to be a partner with all of those server vendors.”

One element about the HPE Go-to-Market relationship is unique, however. StorMagic enters the HPE portfolio with their SvSAN software becoming an explicit for HPE’s own StoreVirtual VSA, their rebrand of the LeftHand iSCSI SAN family that HP originally acquired back in 2008. HPE end-of-lifed the StoreVirtual family last year, with sales stopping at the end of 2019 and support at the end of 2022.

“This was unique, and I can’t think of a case where we come in where they have end of lifed an entire product line,” Grainger noted. “StoreVirtual is a good product for what it was designed to do when it was acquired. The problem it faced was that it was similar to SimpliVity, even though it was in a different department, which also worked against leveraging the relatively strengths of the two. SimpliVity competes more with VMware and Nutanix in bigger data centre plays. That left them with a choice, of whether they scale SimpliVity down to the edge, or develop another product or another partner. It made no sense to squeeze SimpliVity down to a market that doesn’t need their features. They decided to partner with a company that has a brand established in that space. So we were really in the right place at the right time.”

Partners in the HPE Complete program have very clear swimlanes, where partners and HPE’s own sales team position them with respect to other HPE and third- party products in the portfolio.

“Our swimlane is very clear,” Grainger stated. “We are the StoreVirtual replacement. We are the ROBO edge solution to HCI at the edge. We are not a data centre-centric product. If StorMagic is in an opportunity and competing against SimpliVity, one of us is in the wrong room. They have a very scalable platform. Ours is the simplest, with the lowest overhead, and the most economical. It’s easy to use for customers in very small sites with 2-4 server setups. We also sell for thousands, not tens of thousands or hundreds of thousands.”

While the majority of StorMagic partners are already HPE partners, Grainger seems some significant new channel benefits here.

“There is some overlap, as we were a channel-focused company, but it wasn’t until I came in a year ago last January that I made the strategic decision to become 100% channel,” he said. “Because we weren’t 100% channel before that, we didn’t have relationships with the best of the best channel partners, and we will be able to develop those here.”

The HPE Complete relationship should also help StorMagic expand into new geos.

“One particularly exciting thing about the HPE relationship is that even though we are a global company, it was very hard for a company of our size to expand a global infrastructure,” Grainger said. “I almost instantly get that with HPE. Their channel partners who I have briefed are very excited about that, and HPE has thousands of StoreVirtual accounts.”

StorMagic’s SvSAN software is available worldwide now to the HPE’s global reseller and distribution network through the HPE Complete Program.

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