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Paul Kunert

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Paul Kunert is the editor of Channel Register
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Windows Server 2003 custom support could cost MILLIONS

Business leaders who dismissed calls from the IT department to migrate off Windows Server 2003 as nothing more than a maintenance exercise could be left rueing a potentially costly seven-figure financial howler. Extended support for the OS expires on 14 July, meaning no more security patches or updates from Microsoft after that …
Paul Kunert, 19 Dec 2014

Daisy Group: so long AIM, it's been emotional, sort of

The soon-to-be-private B2B comms and tech supplier Daisy Group confirmed this morning that its shares will be yanked from the Alternative Investment Market from 22 January. The previously agreed 185-pence per share offer from a consortium led by CEO Matthew Riley was declared unconditional this month, valuing the firm at £494m …
Paul Kunert, 19 Dec 2014

How much for a wrist job? A tenner normally, but for this one, over $30k

The wait is almost over for footballers, Arab oil magnates, the fanbois elite, Croydon-based lottery winners, or anyone else with a money to burn: a diamond-encrusted Apple Watch will hit the shops next year with an eye-popping price tag. The gaunche-wear, a ‘pimped up’ version of the Watch, comes plastered with eight rounds of …
Paul Kunert, 19 Dec 2014
Red pen

Dixphone's half-year P&L accounts are in. So much RED INK

Fewer arch enemies and a brighter economy should help Frankencorp - the merged Dixons and Carphone Warehouse organisation - oil the wheels of commerce. It's done that with gusto in the six months since the union was sealed. The business Wednesday reported a five per cent year-on-year sales spike to £5.02bn for the first 31 weeks …
Paul Kunert, 17 Dec 2014

Oi, channel peeps. Stop giving money to AWS for IaaS - EMC

Channel partners should eat their own dog food when it comes to deploying hybrid clouds, and use their own infrastructure to develop enterprise apps instead of buying infrastructure-as-a-service from companies like AWS. So said Ross Fraser, EMC EMEA veep of the global alliances team, who unsurprisingly doesn’t want to see its …
Paul Kunert, 16 Dec 2014
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IBM: Get yer cloud services! Analytics, mobile, ten a penny

With all bets placed behind software and services, IBM needs to quickly re-tune its route to customers to get the right suppliers on board and the revenue dial moving in the right direction again. The grand lady of tech is challenged on multiple fronts; the System x volume hardware business is transferring to Lenovo along with …
Paul Kunert, 16 Dec 2014
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Failed would-be COMET saviour now FAILS to save his own biz

A creditors' meeting has been called for Lewisons Wholesale, an electrical retailer run by Clive Coombes, the man that tried and failed to resurrect the brand name of fallen UK High Street giant Comet. As revealed by the Register last month, Lewisons Wholesale was struggling to remain afloat and had notched up eight County Court …
Paul Kunert, 15 Dec 2014

Win Server 2003 custom support: That's NOT going to be fun

Microsoft could make a mint from charging businesses for custom support once Windows Server 2003 goes end of life next summer - but it may not make financial sense or be that easy to do so. There are millions of servers globally still running the 13 year-old OS with one in five customers forecast to miss the 14 July deadline …
Paul Kunert, 15 Dec 2014
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AWS: Wanna join our MSP club? The bar is high, says UK boss

Managed Services Providers - still the most sought after of all channel partners types - can now jump through some hoops to scoop a badge of certification from Amazon Web Services. The infrastructure services firm is formalising relations with MSPs via an extension to it’s programme in a bid to sort the wheat from the chaff. “ …
Paul Kunert, 12 Dec 2014

Cisco: Think we're a lawsuit-hurling villain? 'Complete garbage'

Anyone that paints Cisco as a sueball-slinging bully boy that flexes its legal eagles to stem rivals' innovation is talking “complete garbage”, or so says its president of development and sales. The denial comes after Cisco last week filed several lawsuits in the US to "stop" Arista's "repeated and pervasive copying of key …
Paul Kunert, 12 Dec 2014
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NASA's British cloudy collab provider scores $51m from VCs

Cloudy storage and collaboration service provider Huddle has trousered millions more cash from vulture venture capitalists to spend on biz development on both sides of the Atlantic. The UK-based outfit, started by CEO Alastair Mitchell in 2007, last night took home a $51m Series D round of funding, valuing the business at …
Paul Kunert, 12 Dec 2014
Scrooge McDuck

Did we read that right... 46% growth? UK server market was HUGE in Q3

Perceived wisdom among server makers was that the era of year-on-year double digits revenue hikes each quarter was long gone - and yeah, they probably are - but UK suppliers still received a welcome financial fillip in Q3. The value of the market shot up 46 per cent, to $520m, following a downbeat Q2 following a relatively …
Paul Kunert, 12 Dec 2014

Daisy Group asks exec newbie to deliver managed services glory

Beefing up the tech supply and ICT managed services side of the house will be the major tasks handed to Daisy Group’s incoming CEO Neil Muller. As exclusively revealed by The Channel, Muller is set to take the reins of mid-market telco-come-IT-supplier Daisy from next year when the business is taken private again, and once he …
Paul Kunert, 11 Dec 2014
App Magnets

Remember that Big Blue Apple? Biz apps for iPads are here

The fruits of Apple and IBM’s enterprise software alliance were today plucked and displayed for the world to see: a bunch of apps ported to iOS that target corporate buyers of iPad and iPhones in specific vertical industries. In the first tranche of Big Blue developed MobileFirst “made for business” apps and “supporting” cloudy …
Paul Kunert, 10 Dec 2014
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Computacenter UK MD heading to Daisy Group as CEO

Enterprise reseller Computacenter’s (CC) outgoing big cheese Neil Muller is set to rock up as Daisy Group chief exec from early next year, The Channel can reveal. The 20-year CC veteran - who spent the last three as UK managing director - quit the business in November for pastures new, and though he refused to reveal his next …
Paul Kunert, 10 Dec 2014

Tech Data jumps into Dell's corporate hot tub

Dell is finally falling for the charms of the largest volume disties after signing up Tech Data in parts of mainland Europe ahead of extending the deal to Blighty from next month, or so say multiple sources. The one-time direct selling purist did the distie dance with Ingram across the region earlier this year, and got jiggy …
Paul Kunert, 10 Dec 2014

Pricey buys pay off for shape-shifting Alternative Networks

Revving up the acquisition engine got previously misfiring B2B comms and tech outfit Alternative Networks' top line motoring again, but some resulting cost hikes dampened the bottom line. The AIM-listed firm reported a 20 per cent sales bounce to £137.8m for the year ended September, and it returned to organic growth, albeit at …
Paul Kunert, 10 Dec 2014

Daisy Group slurped by VC consortium, bids to cancel AIM listing

AIM-listed comms and tech outfit Daisy Group Tuesday confirmed that the previously agreed 185 pence-per-share bid from a consortium led by CEO Matthew Riley has been declared unconditional. The offer from Riley, Penta Capital, and long-term investor Tosca Fund, which values Daisy at near £500m, was agreed in October, some months …
Paul Kunert, 09 Dec 2014

Post Office: Here's £100m, Computacenter. Now get us up to date, for pity's sake

Services-based reseller Computacenter has bagged a £100m project to refresh and manage tens of thousands of PCs for the Post Office, in line with the customer’s aim to drag itself into the 21st century. The four-year End User Computing Tower involves CC buying, configuring, installing and maintaining more than 30,000 devices …
Paul Kunert, 08 Dec 2014

400,000 Windows Server 2003 boxes face SUPPORT DOOM

Businesses of Britain are still running Windows Server 2003 on hundreds of thousands of physical boxes ahead of a certain important deadline on 14 July next year. According to HP, there are 900,000 instances of the eleven year-old software out in the wilds and 400,000 physical boxes, with 218 days to go before Microsoft pulls …
Paul Kunert, 08 Dec 2014
Confused computer keyboard

Google? Microsoft? What the heck do they do in cloud?

Amazon Web Services has slashed the prices of 46* services since its launch in 2006, but not one was in retaliation to rivals (no way, not one), insists UK boss Iain Gavin. Under the deflationary cloud model, the main protagonists, which also include Google and Microsoft, are continually dropping their pants to undercut each …
Paul Kunert, 05 Dec 2014
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Industry vet rocks up at Phoenix Software

Industry and distribution veteran Johnny Ellis has crossed into reseller land for the first time, rocking up as sales and marketing director at York-based Microsoft enterprise licensing partner Phoenix Software. Ellis, who only exited Arrow Enterprise Computing Solutions at the end of November, will also control the S&M …
Paul Kunert, 05 Dec 2014

Outsourcery wins a £1.1m project present. Well, it is nearly Christmas

A FTSE100 company has handed ailing cloudy biz Outsourcery an early Crimbo gift by signing a three-year contract worth an estimated £1.1m to rip out its ageing telephony system in favour of "voice services". It's been one hell of a year for the Manchester-based software-as-a-service and online infrastructure seller, co-founded …
Paul Kunert, 05 Dec 2014
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HP or Carbonite? Hmmm. HP or Carbonite? Carbonite!

Do you stick around to help a creaking tech titan rediscover its mojo, or scram for pastures new at a storage upstart? These were seemingly the only options on the table for HP’s chief strategy officer Mohamad Ali, who opted for the latter. After two years and four months, Ali has quit HP to become CEO and president at NASDAQ- …
Paul Kunert, 05 Dec 2014

IBM's ownership of x86 biz comes to a bloody end

Lenovo execs must be counting down the days before they can grab the System x business from IBM across Europe as it continues to disproportionately bleed unit sales and revenues in a tough market. Gartner Q3 EMEA market stats show recovery in the prior three months was nothing but a flash in the pan: shipments fell four per cent …
Paul Kunert, 04 Dec 2014
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Alternative Networks CEO talks up the fluffy white stuff

Developers are beavering away at Alternative Networks on a biz cloud by integrating existing services and those of several tech suppliers it hoovered up during the opening month of the year. The London-listed comms and tech integrator raised a few eyebrows in January when it paid £50m to acquire hosted desktop player Intercept …
Paul Kunert, 02 Dec 2014

Ausgezeichnet! Logicalis devours German channel biz

Integrator Logicalis has wolfed down German infrastructure services biz Inforsacom for an undisclosed sum. Some would say this is a brave move given the state of that country IT market and wider economic woes, with Forrester forecasting a 1.2 per cent rise in spending on tech for 2014. But perhaps Logicalis grabbed a bargain …
Paul Kunert, 02 Dec 2014

Fait Acompli: Microsoft gobbles Android email upstart for $200m

Microsoft has stumped up a reported $200m for San Francisco-based email app-maker Acompli. That Microsoft wanted to gobble Acompli was the worst-kept secret in the industry: a crazy fingered insider had penned a short-lived blog post that had a URL suggesting Microsoft was acquiring the firm, and hit publish before they were …
Paul Kunert, 01 Dec 2014

Juniper whips out knife, slices off security products

Months after Juniper Networks confirmed the prioritisation of revenue-generating projects, the firm has quietly dumped several security products, causing upset to some of its nearest and dearest in the channel. Following a “disappointing” set of calendar Q3 financials, Juniper’s then CEO, Shaygan Kheradpir, said it was cutting …
Paul Kunert, 01 Dec 2014
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Thought tab sales were in the toilet this year? Hah! Wait for next

Slablet sales will be stuck in a U-bend next year and it may take a re-think from the manufacturers before they can be flushed out again. A forecast from Taiwan-based TrendForce indicates tab shipments will decline 3.5 per cent in 2015 to 185.6 million units, the first backwards motion since Apple launched the iPad. “We expect …
Paul Kunert, 28 Nov 2014
Windows OEM devices on stage at Computex

A WHOPPING 8 million Windows Server 2003 systems still out there

Windows Server 2003 refresh activity has yet to show up in a major way across the UK tech channel amid estimates that eight million physical systems are still out there in the wild - not all of which will be replaced like-for-like. Security updates and fixes for the 11-year-old operating system will no longer be made available …
Paul Kunert, 27 Nov 2014

Forget the accountancy scandal, our biz is back: Tech Data

If companies operate as intended then sales growth should be a given, and with its accountancy scandal pretty much behind it Tech Data reported business as usual for the fiscal third quarter that ended last month. The world’s second largest tech distributor reported a 6.1 per cent hike in sales to $6.76bn, largely aided by …
Paul Kunert, 27 Nov 2014
HP CEO Meg Whitman

Wasn't it all supposed to be so different by now, Meg?

Showering partners with love, making changes to the exec line-up, upping R&D and other tweaks made by CEO Meg Whitman were supposed to get HP's business firing on all cylinders, but after year three of the turnaround plan, they've yet to do so. The release of Q4 fiscal ’14 numbers for the year ended October reveal a company with …
Paul Kunert, 26 Nov 2014
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Can't flog software for love nor money? UK mega-reseller Softcat probably ate your lunch

Unstoppable reseller juggernaut Softcat has smashed through the £500m sales barrier in the most recent fiscal year ended July, meaning it has grown for the past 36 straight quarters. In the last four years alone, and in the middle of the worst financial crisis since the the 70s, turnover at the Marlow-based business jumped from …
Paul Kunert, 26 Nov 2014

KCOM Group results hit by Phones4U woes

Brit telco and tech services playa KCOM Group has kickstarted a cost-cutting programme to counter a wobbly top and bottom line, not helped by the collapse of Phone4You and slower than expected PSN demand. The LSE-listed Hull-based group reported a 6.7 per cent drop in turnover to £173m for the first half of fiscal ’15, as profit …
Paul Kunert, 25 Nov 2014

Soz Europe: IBM to delay System X Lenovo switchover for a month

IBM says it has delayed the European switchover of the outgoing x86 business to Lenovo by one month in a bid to side-step sales disruption in its busiest quarter of the year. Under the duo's original plan, the changeover was due to take place on the 1st of next month but IBM didn't want to risk switching systems during the run- …
Paul Kunert, 25 Nov 2014

Phoenix IT Group CEO: Turnarounds don't happen overnight

The turnaround at Phoenix IT Group initiated by CEO Steve Vaughan was never going to happen overnight and the latest set of declining half-year numbers for the period ended September are testament to that point. The LSE-listed tech services biz this morning reported revenues of £107.4m, down 8.1 per cent on the corresponding six …
Paul Kunert, 25 Nov 2014

Mega GP tech services framework badge awarded

Insight UK and Phoenix IT Group are flying the flag for mainstream tech suppliers after scoring a seat on the mammoth General Practice Systems of Choice (GPSoC) framework. GPSoC covers 75 per cent of GP surgeries in England and is administered by the Health and Social Care Information Centre, which provides information, data, …
Paul Kunert, 24 Nov 2014
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Huawei Enterprise UK helmsman Poskett sails off to Dell

Texan tech baron Dell has poached the boss of Huawei Enterprise UK, Dave Poskett, as deputy head of one of its Blighty-based divisions. Poskett was the last of the three senior European execs that Huawei's UK subsidiary lured across to run operations in the region when it set up shop three years ago. Simon Culmer and Dominique …
Paul Kunert, 24 Nov 2014

Logicalis splits with UK sales director Brooker after five months

After less than five months on the job Logicalis sales director Tony Brooker has left the Slough-based integrator, sources have told The Channel. Brooker took control of the sales floor in July to replace Phil Orford, who departed by mutual consent in January at around the same time that CEO Garry Bullard’s short-lived tenure at …
Paul Kunert, 24 Nov 2014
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HP boss Meg Whitman shuffles exec pawns just before biz splits

HP CEO Meg Whitman has outlined a management re-org to steer the business toward an eventual split into two separate Fortune 50 firms, according to an internal memo seen by El Chan. The Palo Alto-based company is consciously uncoupling, with the Printing and Personal Systems (PPS) division set to become HP Inc, and the server, …
Paul Kunert, 22 Nov 2014
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IBM lifts axe, will trim UK workforce weeks before Chrimbo

With only weeks to go before the good folk of Blighty sit down to tuck into their Chrimbo dinners, IBM has decided to swing the corporate axe to trim the local workforce. According to company insiders, UK boss David Stokes yesterday hosted a phone conference with employees at 1pm to inform them of their fate. “Stokes got over …
Paul Kunert, 21 Nov 2014

Former Systemax execs charged over $9m fraud, tax evasion

The Feds have now charged ex-Systemax senior exec Gilbert Fiorentino, following on from his brother and former colleague Carl, with allegedly perpetrating fraud to the tune of millions of dollars as well as evading tax. The criminal case was last night confirmed by the US Attorneys’ Office for the southern district of Florida …
Paul Kunert, 21 Nov 2014
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We're not, er, 'cut-throat' capitalists – VC formerly known as ISIS

Not wanting to be confused with the vicious band of Middle Eastern warmongerers, ISIS Equity Partners has killed off its old brand, and is now answering the phones as Living Bridge. The name change was for fairly obvious reasons, as the venture capitalist doesn’t want to be associated with, er, blood-thirty, medieval cut-throats …
Paul Kunert, 21 Nov 2014
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Computacenter UK boss Muller: Happy New Year, folks... I'm off

Six potential candidates are in the running to replace Computacenter’s outgoing UK managing director Neil Muller, who has resigned but remains on board until the end of January. Muller rocked up at London-based CC in early 1994 as a sales administrator and rose through the ranks over the subsequent two decades, getting his …
Paul Kunert, 21 Nov 2014
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Comet’s might-have-been saviour 'not paying biz debts'

Clive Coombes, the man who tried and failed to save the Comet brand, appears to be struggling to keep his existing business Lewisons Wholesale (LS) afloat, with supplier debts now mounting. The electronics retailing entrepreneur had planned to buy the name of the once mighty High Street giant that went under in late 2012, but …
Paul Kunert, 20 Nov 2014
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Loss of Wales PSN gig? No worries, says Logicalis UK boss

Services-based reseller Logicalis is looking to fill the void left by losing the Wales Public Sector Network (PSN) gig to BT with more bite-sized projects. Well, that's the plan at least. The Slough-based firm is to be ousted by the Brit telco monopoly on a contract that could be worth up to £420m over the next seven years, …
Paul Kunert, 11 Nov 2014
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Rackspace CEO Rhodes: Just months on the job and look at our swollen digits

Taylor Rhodes, the latest man to grab the CEO chair at Rackspace, must have, er, racked up the celebratory drinks last night as the hoster-come-cloud-flogger reported a comparatively decent set of Q3 fiscal ’15 financials. The Texan-based biz reported revenues of $460m, up 4.2 per on last quarter and 18.3 per cent higher than …
Paul Kunert, 11 Nov 2014
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It's a bad day to be Serco's CEO... or an investor, come to that

Scandal-hit integrator Serco today issued its fourth profit warning of this fiscal and calendar year, confirmed a £1.5bn write-down and provision to cover to loss-making contracts and effectively exited private sector business process outsourcing. The financial markets reacted negatively, sending the company’s share price …
Paul Kunert, 10 Nov 2014
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CSC set for ANOTHER re-org but no redundancies involved

Re-arranging the UK deck chairs on good ship CSC is the strategy the integrator has chosen after shelving plans to make further redundancies, according to numerous sources. The US-owned business does not generally shy away from making redundancies, axing 750 people from its Brit operation in late April and parting company with …
Paul Kunert, 10 Nov 2014

Opinion

Neil McAllister

Claims that cloud will drive Oracle's future growth ring hollow
Pure Storage array

Neil McAllister

How the cloud taught Redmond to play by a new set of rules

Features

Pebble Steel
Meet the man who accidentally created the smartwatch hype
No, silly... he was the fall guy for years of Finnish folly
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