Hewlett Packard Enterprise CEO Antonio Neri, who tested positive for COVID-19 on June 16, has completed a 14-day self-quarantine period and is “doing well.”
In a LinkedIn post titled ‘Reflecting On Accomplishments And Momentum In The Face of Adversity,” Neri revealed that he has not had any COVID-19 symptoms for 10 days.
“My spirits have been bolstered by the many messages of support I’ve received from friends, family and colleagues around the globe,” said Neri.
Neri’s disclosure that he had tested positive for COVID-19 sparked an outpouring of warm wishes for a speedy recovery from partners, customers and HPE employees.
Even though he was battling COVID-19, Neri last week delivered the HPE Discover Virtual keynote address that was viewed by more than 750,000 people.
In the blog post, Neri praised the HPE team for delivering the first ever HPE Discover Virtual Experience with “incredible results.”
“As I reflect on the past two weeks, I’d be remiss if I didn’t take a moment to applaud the accomplishments of our team here at HPE and celebrate the momentum of our company, even in the face of great adversity,” said Neri.
Most importantly, Neri said he was pleased that “customer and partners walked away from last week’s event with a clear understanding of our progress to become an as-a-service company and our capabilities to deliver the cloud experience everywhere,”
Neri last week unveiled the next generation of HPE GreenLake cloud services - 17 “building block” offerings for small, medium and large businesses. In addition, he launched the Ezmeral open source, container and AI based machine learning platform which goes head to head against VMware and Red Hat.
HPE partners, for their part, said they were happy to hear that Neri was doing well and congratulated HPE for delivering a rousing and successful HPE Discover.
Felise Katz, the CEO of PKA Technologies, No. 429 on the CRN SP500, said Neri’s inspirational leadership was front and center at HPE Discover Virtual Experience.
“A leader leads by example,” said Katz. “I can not say enough about Antonio’s leadership and how he has conducted himself over the last two weeks. There are no words for it. You have to set an example as a CEO. That is what Antonio did. He set an example with the highest bar not only for partners, customers, and HPE, but for the IT industry at large and for every business. For a CEO to go into self quarantine is not easy to do. But then to continue to be the face and voice of the company to customers and prospects was inspiring to see. Very few people could pull that off.”
Katz said Neri’s leadership makes her and the PKA team feel “greater pride” than ever for the HPE partnership. “Leadership by example is what I look for, “ she said. “That filters down to me, my employees, the rest of the partner community and our customers.”
Katz said it was heartening to see Neri during his many appearances at HPE Discover Virtual. “Antonio did the keynotes, appearances and really didn’t miss out on any of the HPE Discover Virtual experience,” she said. “That was just awesome. We can’t wait to see him in person soon. We are just beyond thrilled that he is doing well.”
Kelly Ireland, founder and CEO of CBT, No. 148 on the 2020 CRN SP500, said HPE Discover Virtual Experience was a bang up success for CBT which did as many live demos for attendees as it did last year at the live HPE Discover event in Las Vegas.
“We did 30-minute live connected worker demos for 170 attendees,” she said. “The live demos on connected workers really resonated with customers. It was a very successful show for us.”
The CBT team was “very inspired” to see Neri at HPE Discover Virtual, said Ireland. “We were all just very happy that he felt well enough to be there,” she said. “He’s Antonio- always ever present and looking to the future.”
Ireland said the HPE edge to cloud platform as a service portfolio is breaking new ground in the convergence of information technology and operational technology world. “With IT-OT integration HPE is the most advanced OEM in this market,” she said. “We are always looking at what’s available and there is just no one that has what HPE has there now.”
Paul O’Dell, a director at CPP Associates, a Clinton, N.J. HPE Platinum partner which was named HPE Solution Provider of the year at HPE Discover Virtual, said HPE Discover Virtual was a big success for CPP. “Our team got a lot of it,” he said. “I found I was able to participate in more sessions than if I was in Las Vegas. We got a lot of knowledge around what HPE is trying to do on the things that are very important to our business including everything as a service, security and AI and analytics.”
HPE continues to be the flat out best technology innovator, said O’Dell. “When you go pound for pound, HPE as a company has the best overall portfolio,” he said. “They are at the top of almost every category that is important from an IT perspective. If you want to put together a solution for a customer that works very well together from huge compute storage and networking perspective to support mission critical applications as well as general purpose applications no one is better. I just told that to several customers today.”
O’Dell said he was glad to hear Neri is feeling better. “We are very thankful that Antonio came out fighting, weathered the storm and came out on the other side. My heart goes out to all those that battled this virus and all those that have lost their lives. There are a lot of people less fortunate. Antonio is one of the lucky ones. He is a fighter and very humble. That is endearing to partners and customers.”
HPE employees are also cheering Neri’s recovery from COVID-19. “Great to hear you’re doing well!” posted Doron Aronson, an HPE Global Corporate Communications Executive. “We have all been rooting for you.”
Neri said HPE has been working hand in hand with customers to navigate the pandemic and “weather the storm” together.
“The future everyone talked about before the pandemic is now here, ahead of schedule,” he said. “Three years ago, we predicted the enterprise of the future would be edge-centric, cloud-enabled, and data-driven. Today, that is no longer a prediction, it is reality.”