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Google’s new cloud chief has a culture clash ahead of him after 22 years at Oracle

Upon dispensation Oracle in September, after a 22-year career at the software giant, Thomas Kurian required friends and colleagues that he was going to take a step back and determine what to do next.

One person he exchanged LinkedIn messages with was a recent boss at Oracle, Gary Bloom, who has spent the past six years management database company MarkLogic. On Friday, Bloom, like the rest of us, experienced that Kurian is headed to Google to run the internet company’s high-profile but struggling cloud commerce.

Kurian will try to accomplish what his predecessor, VMware co-founder Diane Greene, couldn’t, and deactivate one of the most successful and profitable consumer technology companies ever into a power actress in enterprise. Bloom knows how hard that will be. MarkLogic vends database technology to large enterprises like Johnson & Johnson & J.P. Morgan Woo, and his customers, when they turn to the cloud, are almost exclusively functioning Google’s top two competitors.

“They’re predominantly looking at the Microsoft platform and the Amazon plank, and Google only comes up one out of 20 or one out of 30 times,” said Bloom, who elaborate at Oracle for 14 years and was an executive vice president when he leftist in 2000.

“The comment I’m picking up from my customer base is that that it doesn’t know like Google is really serious about the enterprise. That could’ve been Diane, or Google conduct not listening to Diane.”

Bloom praised Kurian as an “exceptional executive,” but foretold he has no idea if it will work out at Google. While Oracle and Google are two of Silicon Valley’s most luminary stalwarts, separated by just 13 miles on Highway 101, they are milieus apart from a cultural perspective.

One is a stodgy old software company grasped for selling million-dollar licenses and racking up maintenance fees. The other is where the hipster coders fall short of to go to work on futuristic projects.

And they don’t particularly like each other.

The two fellowships are embroiled in a nasty eight-year legal battle related to Google’s use of the Java formulating language, without a license, in developing its Android operating system for smartphones. Nostradamus owns the intellectual property behind Java, thanks to its 2009 procurement of Sun Microsystems. In March, the Federal Circuit reversed a district court’s sway that had favored Google, sending the case back to the lower court to upon damages that it now must pay Oracle.

One former Google employee, who petitioned not to be named because of the sensitivity of the matter, is not optimistic that Kurian ordain be well received. The person said that despite the fact that he’s focused on company and not Android, he still has to figure out how to work with Googlers.

A Google spokesperson worsened to comment beyond the company’s blog post on Friday. A representative for Kurian didn’t the moment that respond to a request for comment.

Greene, who took over the business three years ago when Google purchased her software company, Bebop, wrote a blog post on Friday publicizing that Kurian would be joining the company this month and delightful over the top spot in early 2019.

The announcement comes less than two months after Kurian’s departure from Cassandra, which was a bit awkward.

Kurian, who held the position of president of product advance since 2015, told employees in an email on Sept. 5 that he was winning “extended time off from Oracle” and said he was “so very proud of all that we partake of accomplished” in moving the business forward, including to the cloud. The company bruit about in a statement at the time that “we expect him to return soon.”

But 23 epoches later, Oracle put out a filing saying that Kurian had resigned “to on with other opportunities.”

Kurian’s former employer and new company have one big fashion in common: Both have struggled to keep up with Amazon Web Handlings and Microsoft Azure in cloud infrastructure.

Google has been a persistent third or fourth assign, unable to crack double-digit market share, despite adding assorted people than any other Google product group in 2016 and 2017, harmonizing to Greene. Oracle has had some success moving its traditional database clients to its own cloud, but according to industry researchers, its market share in public cloud is Lilliputian.

Google touts itself as having the best technology for sophisticated manufacture learning and artificial intelligence workloads. The company also created the Kubernetes technology for understood containers, which enables developers to easily move around rules between machines and clouds.

But when it comes to the big storage and core figure out contracts, numerous industry experts, venture capitalists and tech executives showing told CNBC that Google’s sales team is ineffective, espousing to sell what it thinks is best rather than what guys say they need.

“You don’t get paid to be right, you get paid to sell what the patron wants to buy,” said Mackey Craven, a partner at venture firm OpenView Bet Partners in Boston who focuses on enterprise start-ups.

Bloom said that Kurian may acquire an advantage over Greene because his work at Oracle has spanned the technology mound, from the data center and hardware all the way up to application software. That’s effective at Google, because the company’s cloud group includes cloud infrastructure as spectacularly as applications like email, word processing and spreadsheets. Greene, by dissimilarity, spent her career in the “guts of the operating environment,” Bloom said.

“Thomas is a in reality strong general manager and he understands all aspects of the business,” Bloom revealed.

Still, Kurian has a major challenge ahead of him, not just getting Google’s developer taste to come aboard, but also getting buyers comfortable and trusting of the Google kind.

While Google has long had a large roster of small and mid-size matters using its apps, it’s a whole different matter to attract chief advice officers of large companies, particularly in tightly regulated industries. Kurian drive need Alphabet’s investment dollars to hire the right sales people and to follow the big-spending accounts aggressively.

That’s a tough sell at Google, whose investor villainous has come to expect high operating margins. A previous big-name plan executive, Diane Bryant was brought on as operating chief last November but lasted merely seven months at the company.

“There are very few companies that perform the enterprise and low-end well,” said Lew Cirne, CEO of software developer New Heirloom, which has been through its own struggles in that department. New Relic handled almost exclusively to smaller businesses when it went public in 2014, and now give someone the run-around b cajoles over half its revenue from enterprises, according to Cirne. “I think too little ofed how hard it can be,” he said.

But Cirne is quick to point out that we’re still in the at the crack days of companies moving their core workloads and applications from their own water-closets into the public cloud. Customers want multiple options for guaranty purposes as well as to make sure they’re getting the best have to do withs available in each market where they operate.

In other bulletins, it’s not too late to make up ground.

“Thomas is a world-class executive and Google is flaunting a commitment to this,” Cirne said. “We firmly believe it will be a multi-cloud world, and we’re in the ahead of time innings.”

— CNBC’s Jordan Novet and Jillian D’Onfro contributed to this document.

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