HP Helion public cloud to be killed off

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HP Helion public cloud to be killed off

HP will discontinue its Helion public cloud offering barely 18 months after launch and only a few months after officially announcing its community of Helion partners. 

The company's head of cloud Bill Hilf, formerly general manager of of Microsoft's Azure cloud platform, said the Helion Public Cloud offering would be "sunset" on 31 January 2016, in favour of an enterprise-grade hybrid cloud model.

HP only launched the OpenStack-based Helion service in May last year, in competition with the likes of Cisco and Red Hat. It was understood HP would spend US$1 billion on the platform and hire hundreds of engineers to staff a facility in Seattle.

The company also bought cloud software developer Eucalyptus in September 2014, with the aim of providing AWS interoperability for Helion.

However, less than a year after Helion launched, Hilf was forced to admit that HP would not succeed in persuading customers to rent or buy computing from the company, and that it didn't make sense to go head to head with the likes of AWS and Microsoft Azure.

"Today, our customers are consistently telling us that in order to meet their full spectrum of needs, they want a hybrid combination of efficiently managed traditional IT and private cloud, as well as access to SaaS applications and public cloud capabilities for certain workloads," he wrote.

"With these customer needs in mind, we have made the decision to double-down on our private and managed cloud capabilities."

HP will instead move to a "strategic, multiple-partner based model for public cloud capabilities", he said.

What about the Helion Network?

CRN has asked HP where partners will fit into this new model. We broke the news back in April that HP was trying to put together a cloud coalition of Helion partners, expected to include top resellers such as Triforce, Somerville Group, Klikon, Data#3, NTT Communications, Datacom and Oriel, which is now owned by BigAir.

HP only confirmed the local Helion Network in July.

In the blog, Hilf wrote that "To support this new model, we will continue to aggressively grow our partner ecosystem and integrate different public cloud environments."

HP will continue to invest in its HP Helion OpenStack solution for private and managed cloud and help customers build cloud-portable applications based on the platform.

The company has also added greater support for AWS as part of its hybrid delivery with Helion Eucalyptus, and worked with Microsoft to support Office 365 and Azure, Hilf said.

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