Howard Boville, former Bank of America CTO, is joining IBM on May 1 to head IBM Cloud as SVP of Cloud Platform, said Arvind Krishna, CEO of IBM, in a LinkedIn post Monday. Business Insider reported on Boville's departure from Bank of America last month.
In his letter to staff on his first day as CEO, Krishna outlined IBM's "strategic battles" — focus on hybrid cloud and AI — and leadership changes. Capitalizing on Linux, containers and Kubernetes, Krishna wants to position the company to win "the architectural battle in cloud," he said.
As IBM President, Jim Whitehurst, former Red Hat CEO and senior vice president of IBM, will lead IBM Strategy and oversee the company's foundational technologies. Paul Cormier, who led product and technologies at Red Hat, will succeed Whitehurst as Red Hat CEO, Krishna announced.
Cloud, cloud, cloud is one takeaway from Krishna's letter. Not to be left behind, blockchain and quantum also underpin his address, building on future technology initiatives prioritized by former CEO Ginni Rometty.
Rometty, whose departure was announced in January, will remain executive chairman of the board through the end of the year.
With a slew of leadership announcements, including Bridget van Kralingen as a new leader of go-to-market strategies, IBM is highlighting where it wants to take its product portfolio.
Details of Boville's role are limited, but building on experience from BoA, he will be integral in helping IBM customers shape hybrid cloud strategies — and serve as a key promoter of the platform. Boville was a central part of BoA's public cloud strategy, a collaboration with IBM which resulted in a financial services-focused cloud for companies and their suppliers.
In the new era of leadership, IBM is making a play for the cloud. With 1.8% of the IaaS public cloud market share in 2018, IBM is dwarfed by sector leaders Amazon and Microsoft, which hold 47.8% and 15.5%, respectively.
To prevent a descent into the "others" category of cloud providers, the legacy technology can make a pitch to existing customers and companies with dated stacks that it is a hybrid standard worthy of adoption. That's where Red Hat comes into play, a portfolio addition that gives IBM an industry edge.