“Use storage like in the cloud”

Interview with Charles Giancarlo, Pure Storage “Use storage like in the cloud”

Pure Storage has become known as a pioneer in SSD storage and considers itself a market leader in technology. Interview with CEO Charles Giancarlo about future trends and the impact of the Covid and Ukrainian wars on the company’s business.

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Pure Storage arrays, here Pure FlashArray XL, depend only on flash storage.

(Photo: Eric Chao / Pure Storage)

Storage-Insider: Mr. Giancarlo, how did your company fare in 2021?

Charles Giancarlo, Pure Storage: Our fiscal year ended in February, we reported in March. Compared to 2020, we have increased by 30 percent, and compared to the third quarter of the financial year 2020/2021 – by as much as 40 percent. Our sales now reach about 2.2 billion. So our growth is on schedule.

What was your strategy during the Covid Recession?

Giancarlo: First of all, we continued to invest despite a temporary downturn in the business. Since the recession is always over, you can’t stop investing if you can. When the recession ends, you can benefit from your investment.

As soon as the COVID pandemic approaches a less acute stage, another crisis begins. How much does the Ukrainian war affect your business?

Giancarlo: In Russia, we had a branch with 15 employees, which contributed less than one percent to sales. We have closed this branch. The 15 workers we had to lay off received significant severance pay. We also withdrew completely from Belarus, with which we had less contact than with Russia. In Ukraine, so far we have worked only with partners.

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And what about the rest of Europe? After all, there is a very real risk that the military conflict will overtake the countries that were once part of Russia.

Giancarlo: We will continue to invest in Europe, one of our most important markets. We carry out research and development in Prague; there is a large team working there, including the Ukrainians, who have now returned there to defend the country. We recruited Ukrainian refugees and even expanded our branch there.

“We want enterprise users to have access to data and storage as easily as they are in the cloud,” said Charlie Giancarlo, CEO of Pure Storage.

(Image: Pure Storage)

What are Pure’s current plans? How should things go technically and strategically?

GiancarloA: We were the first to be consistent semiconductor memory used for storage. Our systems are easy to use, consume only 20 percent of the energy of conventional storage systems due to our design and highly sophisticated software, and save space because they are denser. Our customers buy Pure because they want more with their data and at the same time be more efficient. It continues in this direction.

What is the next step?

Giancarlo: We are at the forefront of making our systems ’data available to users in exactly the same way they are accustomed to the cloud. No cloud user should contact IT first if they need more storage space. That is how it should work for us in the future Cloud-Native and other applications. In Portworx, which serves cloud on-premises applications, we have beta services that include databases, indexing, Back up copy and provide disk recovery. The same goes for Fusion, which provides direct access to the rest of the applications. Again, we are in beta and moving to general availability in June.

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But others now also have cloud usage patterns.

Giancarlo: It’s not about the billing, it’s about the technical side. Those who take advantage of the relevant HPE, Dell, or other offerings today will receive on-demand bills for devices in their location. The rest works as usual. For example, developers still need to contact IT if they need new storage. We are currently the only ones deploying real cloud processes, such as expanding client memory. For me, this is the most important trend: after networking over IP, count through VMs and containers, and now we’re finally virtualizing storage.

But companies like Datacore would see it differently!

Giancarlo: Can be. But really …

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