Following the acquisition of VMware by Broadcom, many businesses are keeping a close watch on the announcements coming from Broadcom and evaluating what the changes to partner programs, products and licensing mean for their organisation. In this article we have consolidated and summarised much of what has been communicated so far!
As Broadcom has declared changes to VMware products and licensing, it has consistently highlighted its ambition to simplify and make it easier for customers to do business with them. While there remains plenty to crystallise at an individual customer level, not least around pricing, discounts, and any potential customer/partner incentives – we hope that these will be worked through over the next 3-4 months.
As internal structures are announced for the new VMware by Broadcom, there may be changes to how customers are supported. Whilst we can’t pre-empt what those may be and the support individual customers will receive, we can, and are already working with customers to provide as much assurance and clarity as possible.
As we have been working with many of our customers this year, it is clear, that each business has its own unique questions, priorities, and considerations. Whilst this FAQ document provides some clarity around some high-level changes, understanding how your business best navigate the changes and achieve the best outcomes requires more in-depth conversation and we encourage you to seek the specialist support of a recognised Broadcom partner.
Since the acquisition, the VMware portfolio has been streamlined from 168 products and bundles with over 8,000 SKUs to just two core offerings plus add-ons. The two foundational offers are:
- VMware Cloud Foundation – An enterprise call hybrid cloud solution designed to meet the needs of large and mid-sized businesses.
- VMware vSphere Foundation – A secure and resilient workload platform designed for businesses running small to midsized data centres.
To supplement and enhance these two foundational products, VMware by Broadcom customers will also be able to bolt on a number of value-added services, designed to help them achieve specific outcomes, for example meeting advanced storage, security, disaster recovery or Private AI requirements.
For small deployments, Broadcom have also confirmed that vSphere Standard and vSphere Essentials Plus will continue to be made available.
A significant change is that perpetual licensing is no longer available. VMware Cloud Foundation and VMware vSphere Foundation are available on a subscription model only. It’s worth remembering that for the last couple of years, VMware have been open about their intent to transition from a perpetual to subscription licensing model. Under Broadcom this transition has been completed, just a little sooner than many anticipated.
There really is no one size fits all answer here. Yet, before seeking out alternatives, it’s worth exploring the value that these two new foundational offerings provide. Let’s remind ourselves of what they include:
- VMware Cloud Foundation is uniquely designed to help customers get value from a full stack infrastructure. The platform offers vSphere, vSAN and NSX with the full Aria management and orchestration suite with new services included.
- VMware vSphere Foundation promises to achieve data centre optimisation in traditional vSphere environments. It includes Tanzu Kubernetes Grid in addition to Aria Operations and Aria Operations for Logs as part of its standard suite of features. Additionally, customers with lighter requirements such as basic hardware consolidation or virtualization on a very small number of servers can still purchase subscriptions to vSphere Standard and vSphere Essentials Plus.
Bringing VMware licensing into a much more controlled set of solutions centred around these two core offerings could bring significant opportunity to improve cross-product integration, common management, and operational efficiency. What’s more, they could provide the ability to focus developers on improving the functionality of the platforms rather than maintaining both standalone and integrated versions.
Broadcom has committed to a long-term strategy of standardising and expanding the VMware Cloud Foundation (VCF) platform across on-premise, data centre hosting providers, and hyperscalers.
VMware’s leading hybrid cloud infrastructure, VMware Cloud on AWS is also built on VMware Cloud Foundation and continues to be a robust solution for accelerating the movement of workloads to cloud with minimal requirements for refactoring or development.
In addition, as Artificial Intelligence becomes a key topic on organisation’s roadmaps, VMware Private AI built on VMware Cloud Foundation provides powerful capabilities in a platform where intellectual property and data can be tightly controlled.
As mentioned in the point above, Broadcom has publicly stated its strategic intent to invest in VMware Cloud Foundation, and VMware Cloud on AWS is built on this capability. VMware Cloud on AWS remains a powerful tool in enabling businesses to achieve many great business outcomes from a rapid data centre exit strategy, to bolstering security and reducing the burden of operational management.
Broadcom has announced the internal leadership responsible for the ongoing management of VMware Cloud on AWS, with the solution being a critical architecture component for many of its customers at all sizes.
Anticipating what’s next, we’d expect to see VMware Cloud on AWS evolve to offer a broader set of VMware Cloud Foundation capabilities, supporting bring your own licensing and providing a more closely aligned solution for customers whichever compute platform (Hyperscaler, MSP or Private Cloud) they choose to run their VCF-based applications on. This is likely to provide increased flexibility in the AWS infrastructure options for both compute and storage and support ongoing optimisation and efficiency of customer environments.
As Xtravirt’s recent case studies with Sophos and Kingston University highlight, VMware Cloud on AWS continues to be a compelling solution meeting many business use cases for our customers. As a Broadcom Premier Partner and official AWS Advanced Tier Partner, Xtravirt offer Strategy Assessments and best in class migration services including successfully helping many customers secure support through AWS funding under the Migration Acceleration Program (MAP). If you are interested in the potential benefits of a move to VMware Cloud on AWS, please contact us to find out more.
Following Broadcom’s announcement in December 2023 that it planned to divest VMware’s End-User Computing Division, it has now been officially confirmed that KKR, a global investment firm has signed an agreement with Broadcom to acquire the EUC Division to operate a standalone company. In the press release, flagship products Horizon and Workspace ONE were recognised as best-in-class platforms by Bradley Brown, Managing Director at KKR, who also outlined his intent to invest in product innovation and customer success. This rapid progress to close the transaction should provide confidence in the ongoing investment in the products. Xtravirt will be working closely with new organisation to ensure the highest levels of support for customers during the transition.
In early February 2024, in a move to streamline and simplify partner programs, Broadcom terminated its partner agreements with all VMware resellers and service providers. Only partners who met Broadcom’s more stringent requirements, were invited to join Broadcom’s Advantage Partner Program.
The Broadcom Advantage Program is a ‘by invitation only’ partner program, featuring 4 tiers.
The change of partner program has led to a number of changes which could impact your VMware partner’s ability to meet your requirements:
- Only Official Broadcom partners are authorised to sell VMware by Broadcom products
- Only Select, Premier and Pinnacle partners will be able to access financial incentives, potentially limiting some partner’s ability to pass on discounts to customers
- With Premier and Pinnacle partners offered enhanced access to training and technical certifications, these top tier partners will have the best opportunity to keep their skills up to date and meet the evolving needs of customers.
Yes, Xtravirt have accepted their invite to join Broadcom’s Partner Advantage Program, as a Premier Partner. At this tier, Xtravirt’s ability to provide specialist VMware consulting, managed services and product and licensing support to organisations in the UK remains unchanged.
Yes, as a Broadcom Premier Partner, Xtravirt remains an authorised seller of VMware by Broadcom licenses. Our experts are on hand to not only help you price and procure your products and solutions, but understand the value that the core offerings and add-ons can bring to your organisation.
Our VMware Strategy Assessment is an independently created and expert led offering, designed to help businesses better understand and document their current estate and map their future roadmap, licensing options and support requirements. Balancing the need to minimise cost, with the goal to maximise value and fulfil target business outcomes, your bespoke report will provide you with an informative and actionable plan, allowing you to move forward with confidence. Contact us to find out more.
For customers with ELA renewals, those looking to expand licensing, or those looking to make strategic architecture investments, we would strongly recommend engaging with a trusted partner alongside discussions with your Broadcom account manager to help identify the best options based on facts available.
What questions do YOU want answered about the acquisition of VMware by Broadcom?
- My ELA is due to expire soon, what are my options?
- What support can I get if I don’t move from an ELA to a subscription?
- Is VMware vSphere Foundation or VMware Cloud Foundation the best-fit for my business?
- What ROI can I expect from VMware Cloud Foundation, and what skills will I need to unlock its full potential?
- How do I upgrade from what I have today to the new VMware by Broadcom solutions?
- What has happened to VMware Cloud Director?
- Would VMware Cloud on AWS be a better choice?
- I have NSX but only use the firewall functionality, what should I do?