There’s some moving and shaking going on at Eucalyptus, a provider of open-source cloud technology. Co-founder Rich Wolski is stepping back from the company to spend more time back at the University of California, Santa Barbara. And, Said Ziouani, the former Red Hat exec who signed on two years ago to head up sales, is gone. Eucalyptus CEO Marten Mickos (pictured above) confirmed both pieces of news Friday afternoon.
Mickos said Wolski’s transition back into academia was always part of the plan. Asked if there was a shake up going on, he said: “Anytime, Marten Mickos is CEO there is going to be change and adjustments.” Tim Zeller now heads up sales, he added.
The company, which went commercial and closed its first venture capital round in April 2012, grew out of work by Wolski and others at UCSB — the company actually has 7 co-founders.
It may be true that these changes are part of the natural ebb and flow of business. But it’s also definitely true that Eucalyptus competes with CloudStack, OpenStack and OpenNebula open-source clouds, as well as VMware’s proprietary vCloud Director. There are a half dozen different distributions of OpenStack alone from Rackspace; Cloudscaling; Piston Cloud (see disclosure), HP and others. The real question is whether there’s enough market demand to sustain that many choices for the long haul.
In the words of one VC executive, there are too many “me-too” cloud stacks. “Demand is not there for 90 flavors of OpenStack plus Eucalyptus plus these others,” he said. Perhaps rising demand for cloud computing will float all boats. But it’s as likely that there will be consolidation. Watch this space.
Disclosure: Piston is backed by True Ventures, a venture capital firm that is an investor in the parent company of this blog, Giga Omni Media. Om Malik, founder of Giga Omni Media, is also a venture partner at True.
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