NetApp is a core component of HSMC growth story: Anuj Gupta

We strongly believe in Data Fabric vision of NetApp and its extensive portfolio around data management, says Anuj Gupta, CEO, Hitachi Systems Micro Clinic.

Hitachi Systems Micro Clinic as a premier systems integrator and IT services company has been a strategic partner of NetApp for many years. Anuj Gupta, CEO, Hitachi Systems Micro Clinic shares the company’s tryst with NetApp and how both companies are addressing the data management projects across Indian enterprises.

What are the main technology trends with respect to storage infrastructure across your enterprise customers in 2018?

Organizations have experienced an explosion of data across the last few years. At Hitachi Systems Micro Clinic (HSMC) we see three distinct technology trends from a storage infrastructure perspective. Customers are looking to modernize their existing tape drives and traditional storage with new age storage technologies like Flash or even hybrid systems.

“Focused products of NetApp by HSMC include ONTAP Cloud, ONTAP Select, OCI, Altavault, StorageGrid, HCI, All Flash Arrays”

As customers refresh their existing data centers or build next gen data centers, they are increasingly looking at new technologies like Converged and Hyper Converged Infrastructure. Newer storage technologies like SolidFire are also finding interest from customers.

Another major trend is how customers leverage the power of cloud infrastructure while still maintaining some part of their applications and data on-premise or as a co-located service. Their key concern is data management across the hybrid cloud infrastructure.

Across these three key requirements, our customers want storage systems that are scalable, reliable and agile to meet the fast changing pace of their development and growth.

How has the buying patterns of IT buyers and CIOs changed over past few years with respect to storage?

With the explosion of data, storage has come out of the shadows of infrastructure and started to gain focus. Organizational data is now distributed – stored in multiple locations, on premise and in multiple cloud location; is Dynamic – constantly changing, making it important for the CIO and IT team to know where the data is and its source and is Diverse – generated in and outside the organization through various routes like social, digital, IoT, AI, Machine learning etc.

With IT budgets constantly under pressure, CIOs and IT Buyers are looking at storage infrastructure and systems that will provide them with storage efficiencies, which will help them optimize storage and reduce their footprint while being resilient, scalable and cost effective.

CIOs are now looking at new business models like as-a-service and pay-as-you-grow models in storage as well. These will typically replace traditional perpetual license models over a period of time. At HSMC we are working closely with NetApp to come up with offerings such as Backup-as-a-service, Storage-as-a-service, and Data Protection-as-a-service to support our customers.
At the same time, HSMC will also support the CIOs expectations of helping them modernize their existing storage; build the next generation data center and leverage the power of hybrid cloud though data management.

What about adoption of Flash storage across your customers in India? Has it become mainstream across enterprises at large?

At Hitachi Systems Micro Clinic, we are seeing almost 90% of our enterprise and upper mid-market customers enquiring about Flash technology and its benefits. It is estimated that 50 percent of external storage market will be on Flash by 2020 with the current average at approx. 15 percent.

We expect Flash adoption to accelerate rapidly and will transform the storage architecture and revolutionize the enterprise data center. With their ability to deliver workloads with high performance, security, improved application performance, fast processing and save rack space and cooling costs; an All-Flash data center is not that far away in the future.

3 big storage trends in 2018 : Anuj Gupta, CEO, HSMC


Modernize Storage through Data Management:  Customers are modernizing their existing tape drives and traditional storage with new-age storage technologies like Flash or even hybrid systems.


Build Next Generation Datacenter: Refreshing the existing data centers or building new ones requires Converged, HCI, and also newer storage technologies like SolidFire.


Harness the power of Hybrid Cloud: Leveraging the power of cloud infra for data management while maintaining some part of their apps and data on-premise or as a co-located service.

Briefly describe the GTM of Hitachi Systems Micro Clinic for 2018 as a strategic alliance partner of NetApp?
Our GTM in 2018 is based on a combination of region-wise focus and a vertical approach. We have teams that are cross-functional in nature supported by teams that are vertical focused. Each team is built self-sufficient with sales, pre-sales and business development resources. With over 2000 resources in the country, HSMC as one of India’s premier Systems Integrator is on track to become a USD 1 billion revenue organization in three years’ time.

Our relationship with NetApp and the alignment with Data Fabric story is a key component of our growth story. HSMC is a NetApp Platinum partner and we are on track to become India’s first and only Star partner for NetApp in the next few months. With over 40+ resources in Sales and Technical certified on NetApp technologies, we have a very strong practice around NetApp that starts with storage assessment services built around NetApp OCI for our customers and covers the entire spectrum of sizing, architecture building, implementation and support across the product and solution lifecycle.

Our resources are trained and knowledgeable across the entire spectrum of NetApp products and solutions from traditional SAN & NAS storage to Hybrid systems to All-Flash and covering new technologies of SolidFire, Flexpod, HCI to the Cloud products of ONTAP, Altavault, StorageGrid etc to name a few.

What keeps Hitachi Systems Micro Clinic and NetApp ahead in the storage projects versus the competing vendors?

NetApp is now a data management company and not just a storage company. HSMC believes in the Data Fabric vision of NetApp.In today’s hybrid

infrastructure reality where customers have their applications residing in on-premise data centers, co-located facilities and multiple hybrid cloud environments; it is critical for organizations to know where their data resides and how to store, manage, back-up, retrieve and analyze it effectively for business alignment. NetApp’s Data Fabric vision that helps customers effectively manage their data seamlessly across such hybrid environments is something that HSMC aligns with completely and has been a differentiator for us in the marketplace. We have a strong capability to showcase the Data Fabric vision to our customers through demos and PoCs.

Being a key system integrator and partner for NetApp, HSMC does not believe in focusing on only a few products from NetApp. Rather we align closely with the Data Fabric vision of NetApp that will drive our business in 2018 and beyond. Various NetApp products such as ONTAP Cloud, ONTAP Select, OCI, Altavault, StorageGrid, HCI, All Flash Arrays etc will be the ones we will go to market with.

We are seeing an adoption of NetApp storage across the segments and customer size. The early adopters for NetApp storage in India are IT/ITes followed by BFSI and Manufacturing for their unified workloads.

Aligned with NetApp Data Fabric vision, our focus is to capture momentum with a whole new approach to storage management that will help our customers re-align resources, unleash their data’s full potential, and realize their vision.



Anuj Gupta, CEO, Hitachi Systems Micro Clinic


Are you also working on newly launched NetApp HCI ? How has been the response from the market?

Yes, Hitachi Systems Micro Clinic is closely aligned with and offers NetApp Hyper Converged Infrastructure to our customers and it is proving to be a game changer in the HCI marketplace. With its core on the SolidFire technology, NetApp HCI gives the ability to the customer to scale as per their requirement and save on licensing cost as well. It combines scalable compute and storage in a single platform managed through a single software-defined management platform. The ability to add new HCI nodes that offer the flexibility of only storage or only compute or a mix is gaining traction with the customers and proving to be a differentiator.

NetApp Enterprise-Class HCI is definitely a HCI 2.0 as we see some great traction in the customer space. NetApp HCI has been named an Evolutionary Disruptor in Gartner Report titled Competitive Landscape for Hyper Converged Integrated Systems.

What is your outlook for demands for storage and data management over the next 24 months and how will you leverage this market opportunity?

The next 24 months will see the death of two key words in the storage world – IOPS, and Capacity. We strongly believe that with the explosion of data it will no longer be about storage management but more about data management across the hybrid infrastructure environment. Customers will want to know where their data is, how to manage it, how to retrieve it, back it up and how to analyze it by leveraging the infrastructure backbone of on-premise, co-located and hybrid cloud.

Aligned with NetApp Data Fabric vision, our focus is to capture momentum with a whole new approach to storage management that will help our customers re-align resources, unleash their data’s full potential, and realize their vision.