Oracle taps former HP exec Donatelli for key hardware role

The ex-EMC veteran will oversee Oracle's converged infrastructure group

David Donatelli, Oracle's new executive vice president of Converged Infrastructure.

David Donatelli, Oracle's new executive vice president of Converged Infrastructure.

Confirming rumours dating back to as early as March, Oracle has announced it has appointed former Hewlett-Packard executive David Donatelli as executive vice president for converged infrastructure.

Donatelli will report directly to Oracle CEO Mark Hurd and will be responsible for infrastructure offerings including the company's engineered systems, server, storage, networking and tape products. He will also help oversee Oracle hardware products designed for hybrid cloud environments.

Donatelli joined HP in 2009 and served as executive vice president and general manager of HP's Enterprise Group, with responsibility for the enterprise hardware business, including storage, server, networking and converged infrastructure products. He reportedly was considered a contender for HP's CEO role before the appointment of Meg Whitman.

However, in 2013, Donatelli was replaced by Bill Veghte as head of the Enterprise Group and was reassigned to a position evaluating startup candidates for possible investments.

Before his tenure at HP, Donatelli spent 22 years at EMC, where he held a variety of management, operations, sales and marketing positions, including president of the EMC Storage Division.

"Donatelli's is a fascinating and ongoing story," said Charles King, principal analyst with Pund-IT.

His departure from EMC to join HP caused quite a stir, King said, including threats of litigation and an eventual settlement between the companies.

Whitman's decision to push Donatelli out of his leadership role at HP Enterprise, however, suggests HP won't retaliate against Oracle for hiring him, King said.

Oracle should be a good place for Donatelli, King said: "The converged systems organization is right in his wheelhouse from a technological and experience perspective."

It's also a critically important group for the company, he added. If Donatelli does well there, "it could inspire reasonable questions about HP's and Whitman's ability to recognize and gain full advantage from their in-house talent," King said.

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