Christian Leutner, VP & Head of Product Sales Europe at Fujitsu on how the evolution of Fujitsu’s product business in Europe unleashes the power of data
It has been quite a year for us all, with the unprecedented effects of the COVID pandemic really accelerating digital transformation around the world. For our business too, the unpredictable turn of events in 2020 was a real test – and arrived just months after we’d taken a decision to shift the focus of Fujitsu’s Product business in Europe to enable our customers on their data-driven transformation journeys.
It’s fair to say that 2020 has genuinely stress-tested this new business model. And – I’m delighted to confirm – we’re seeing both great feedback and excellent initial results from this approach with our customers. It has underlined Fujitsu’s capabilities in adding tremendous extra value for our customers, on top of our technology portfolio.
That’s why when we started reshaping the Product business, we placed the emphasis on developing our ecosystem, empowering our experts to deliver the magic that brings everything together for our customers. No matter where they are starting, or where they want to go, Fujitsu is able to make technologies and services work together seamlessly.
Fujitsu itself has changed – and will continue to change – to provide our customers with the best possible responses to all these drivers. If you thought you knew the Fujitsu of the past, then I hope to make you think again.
The role of Fujitsu going forward
What is Fujitsu for? Our role is to help customers cut through the noise and choose the most relevant and valuable technologies to them.
Today, our philosophy is rooted in the belief that unless what you buy solves a business problem – in an economic model that provides value to your business – then we are not coming through on our core promise.
We believe that data is what now drives long-term business success. This can be measured across multiple dimensions: revenue growth, customer responsiveness, business resilience, operational efficiency, product innovation… too many to list in full.
Our consultancy-led co-creation approach starts with our data-driven transformation strategy (DDTS). This isn’t a random starting point. Research we commissioned earlier this year shows a clear correlation between data maturity and business performance. And fewer than 5% of enterprises surveyed were truly data-driven. If you are interested in finding out where your company stands on this scale, you can even see how you compare with our online tool.
Building a data-driven enterprise
The fact that so few organizations are currently data-driven should not be a surprise. It’s hard to reach that goal when data is distributed so widely and often inaccessibly. Very often, the scope and potential of that data is neither completely managed nor understood.
Creating data-driven environments will look different in every situation, and off-the-shelf solutions will rarely be effective. To respond to this, Fujitsu places a very high priority on solutions that leverage the curated, best of breed, ecosystem we’ve build over many years.
For example, in storage, as well as offering our ETERNUS line-up, we capture outside innovation from long-established partners, such as NetApp, and new start-ups like Datera and Qumulo.
Plus, especially critical for data-driven environments, we’ve focused on enhancing machine-learning workloads on the latest series of our PRIMERGY series and, for larger requirements, our latest HPC technologies, developed for the world’s fastest supercomputer, Fugaku.
We have changed the way we now merge Fujitsu’s technology with that of our ecosystem partners – including offering pay-per-use consumption across all our ecosystem solutions. I’ll come back to that later. And in terms of breadth of ecosystem, it is about much more than hardware vendors and ISVs – it also requires channel partners and service providers with specific service, sector, or geographic capabilities to meet customers’ precise needs. Here Fujitsu has changed too, with our new Ecosystem Hub, designed to help partners succeed in today’s data-driven era. The hub provides a dynamic space where both existing and new partners can collaborate, innovate, and generate new business value.
We believe the only way forward is effective collaboration across organizational boundaries. Not all vendors are comfortable with that, but Fujitsu is a true believer in co-creation. It is a fundamental value that drives the company, as shown by a new AI project we developed collaboratively with Capgemini’s newly acquired engineering research and development services arm, Altran. The project’s focus is an AI-powered digital twin that uses Augmented Reality to control a device in one location from another robotically. The solution is driven by Fujitsu’s data platform, powering the AI models with our high-performance core and edge hardware, plus a software stack to make everything hum.
Today’s key drivers – mobility and economic flexibility
If we bring the point of focus to today, there are two absolute demands that all organizations have to resolve to remain in business.
The first is mobility, where the dramatic shift to working from home means hugely increased demand for both mobile devices and remote access. In terms of access, VDI infrastructure projects deliver the desktop to any device. This requirement is not temporary – it is here to stay, and Fujitsu continues to invest in PRIMEFLEX Integrated Systems – ready-made building blocks for modernizing data centers – with new offerings for accelerating the deployment of VDI. In terms of devices, our LIFEBOOK series has been updated, including our famous “two-pound notebook”, which builds on and extends the core LIFEBOOK values of mobility, design, and security.
The second point of focus is economic flexibility. While cost-control has always been necessary in business, it has now taken on a new dimension in an environment where tomorrow you might need to suspend everything for an unknown period, or you might need to scale up to a capacity you previously considered outside the realms of fantasy.
Fujitsu is responding to this new reality with a massive rollout of new uSCALE consumption-based offerings, including all our products, services, AND ecosystem partner solutions. It embraces the enormous amount of data still on-premises and creates consistent economics across cloud and on-prem apps vital for customers’ hybrid environments. This is a significant step to enable our sales consultants to position the right technology, in the right way, for your specific business challenges. It is a fair, unique, and differentiated offering in the rapidly evolving pay-per-use marketplace.
These are the ways Fujitsu has evolved for the better of our customers and partners – with a consultancy-led approach to help customers deliver value from data-driven strategies. We leverage integrated ecosystem-wide solutions, running across hybrid cloud infrastructure environments, delivered in the correct economic consumption model, for you.
If you thought you knew us – think again!
Christian Leutner is an industry veteran with a career spanning 25 years in the IT product, services and technology market. Christian’s current role is that of Vice President, Head of Product Sales Europe at Fujitsu. The Product Business is a key part of Fujitsu’s global strategy. Christian joined Fujitsu in 2004 and has held a number of senior executive and director positions. Prior to this, he worked for Toshiba Europe as Head of Product Marketing and started his career back in 1995 with IBM. He holds a bachelor’s degree in Economics and Business Administration from the University of Trier, Germany and a Master’s from ESADE Business School, Spain and the University of Trier.