John Jahnke

Tackling the enterprise app store

Protocol Enterprise

Hello, and welcome to Protocol Enterprise! Today: Let Tackle CEO John Jahnke explain how enterprise cloud marketplaces work, why Amazon sold a bunch of antacids to Lower Manhattan offices after AWS released its revenue numbers, and this week in enterprise moves.

Shopping for software

Enterprise software is notoriously difficult to buy, but marketplaces from Salesforce, Microsoft, Amazon, and others are trying to change that. By aggregating third-party software, consolidating cloud spend, and standardizing contract terms, these marketplaces are trying to make software both easier and faster to buy.

But marketplaces themselves are tricky to navigate, as we’ve outlined in our enterprise app store series. There are stringent review processes for listing software, requirements around pricing and packaging, transaction fees, and more.

Those challenges are what John Jahnke, CEO of cloud marketplace platform, is trying to solve. Recently I spoke with Jahnke about the evolution of cloud marketplaces, how software purchasing is changing, and more.

  • On the evolution of cloud marketplaces: “The pandemic no longer allowed sellers to meet with their buyers, and they had to figure out ways to engage with their buyers to let their buyers buy where they wanted to buy. And with all things moving to cloud, the cloud marketplaces accelerated in prominence as being part of the solution.”
  • On marketplaces as vital sales channels: “I think budget is a big thing, budget consolidation and vendor consolidation. A lot of it comes back to that Moore's law for software theme: They don't want to maintain contracts with 1,000 different suppliers; they'd much rather have an enterprise agreement with Microsoft or an enterprise agreement with Amazon or Google and then a lot of sub-agreements underneath that, but it's still governed under the same budget. The cloud providers also all have terms that make it easy for a buyer to just say, ‘Hey, I can use the Microsoft or Amazon contract.’ So it's standard contracts versus having to negotiate one-off contracts.”
  • On the benefits of marketplaces: “The main benefits are one access to the cloud budget, being able to ask your buyer, ‘Hey, would it be easier to buy from us on your cloud bill?’ That is a huge value. Beyond access to budget, the use of their contracts is very beneficial. Then the third benefit is the ability to co-sell with the cloud providers. What co-sell means is, we have a joint target customer, and they use Microsoft, for example, and I want to register a deal with Microsoft and be able to work together on that opportunity because if my software lands on Azure, it drives consumption for Microsoft, it delivers value to the buyer, so everyone wins.”

Read the full Q&A here.

— Aisha Counts (email | twitter)


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Et tu, AWS?

After a week of Wall Street types freaking out about slowing growth rates for cloud computing services, AWS gave the traders a fresh reason to reach for a new bottle of Tums on Thursday.

AWS revenue growth slowed to 27% during the last three months, an enviable pace for anyone not involved in the 15-year cloud infrastructure boom but well below expectations for the quarter. Its third-quarter revenue total of $20.5 billion, which was almost as much as AWS recorded during all of 2018, fell below Wall Street estimates of $21.1 billion, according to CNBC.

Earlier this week Microsoft lowered its expectations for Azure growth (a “lackluster” 37% clip) during the current quarter, which sent its stock plunging in after-hours trading. But in what some would call a “narrative violation,” Google Cloud grew 38%, better than expected from the financial tarot-card readers.

It’s beyond obvious at this point that the consumer economy is on shaky ground heading into the end of the year, and there have been worries throughout enterprise tech that such weakness would eventually carry over into its world. But there’s a difference between concerns about the overall health of the enterprise tech sector and concerns that the cloud-stock surge that accompanied the pandemic-fueled growth rates of the past two and a half years is coming to an end.

Only one of those concerns is valid.

“It is a strong testament to the benefits of cloud computing that despite two major obstacles to growth the worldwide market still expanded by 24% from last year,” said John Dinsdale, chief analyst at Synergy Research, in a press release sent after Amazon’s report. If you want to really freak out about the health of a tech sector, talk to somebody at a social media company.

— Tom Krazit (email | twitter)

AI and chips: What the future holds for the U.S. and China

Join Protocol Enterprise’s Kate Kaye for a virtual event next Thursday, Nov. 3 at 10:30 a.m. PDT, that will feature two separate discussions between tech and policy experts on the future of AI-related partnerships among tech businesses, developers, and AI researchers in the U.S. and China, part of a Protocol Enterprise special report coming out next week on the future of global AI development amid the rise of nationalism.

In the first discussion, Kate and an expert panel — Davis Sawyer, co-founder and chief product officer at Deeplite; Xiaomeng Lu, director of geotechnology at Eurasia Group; and Abigail Coplin, assistant professor of sociology and science, technology, and society at Vassar College — will address AI tech collaboration between the U.S. and China, the possibility of further U.S.-China detachments that could affect the AI and semiconductor industries, how AI tech collaboration between the U.S. and China will be difficult to disentangle, and more.

In the second discussion, Kate will be joined by Matt Sheehan, a fellow in the Asia program at Carnegie Endowment for International Peace; and Rebecca Arcesati, an analyst at Mercator Institute for China Studies (MERICS), to examine the realities and misconceptions around AI ethics in China, the country’s AI and data privacy regulations, and the risks of an AI conversation in the U.S. driven by national security forces.

RSVP here.

Enterprise moves

Sharyl Givens was appointed chief people officer at Splunk. Givens formerly held human resources leadership roles at Proofpoint, SanDisk, and Dolby Laboratories.

Aali Qureshi joined Kissflow as senior vice president of sales for the Americas. Qureshi was formerly a business unit executive for cognitive cloud at IBM.

Nick Degnan joined Axonius as global senior vice president of sales. Degnan formerly held sales roles at Dell EMC and Pure Storage.

— Aisha Counts (email | twitter)

Around the enterprise

As expected, Intel reported dismal third-quarter earnings resultssparked in part by a 27% decline in data-center revenue that will likely lead to a batch of layoffs.

Google Cloud launched something called the Blockchain Node Engine, which, sure, fine, whatever.


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Thanks for reading — see you tomorrow!

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