Key takeaways: Rackspace Analyst Day 2018

Last month, we held our annual Analyst Day event to update the UK and European analyst community on our achievements over the past year. We took the attendees through our new go-to-market strategy, key focus areas and how we plan to implement these in 2018 and beyond.

We hosted attendees from 10 analyst houses: 451 Research, Analysys Mason, Canalys, Freeform Dynamics, Gartner, IDC, ISG, McKinsey, Ovum, PAC and TechMarketView.

We’ll look at some specific areas in more detail below, but the biggest headline of the day was how multi-cloud strategies are helping customers transform and grow. Our Rackers shared examples of how businesses we’ve partnered with are doing exactly this, across various sectors and markets.

While we announced strong revenue in the EMEA region, the biggest (little) number that stands out is 1.6%. That’s our industry-leading low rate of churn. So, what’s driving this?

I think it’s a few things, including how we’re making ourselves a complete destination for a best-of-breed ecosystem across IaaS, PaaS, SaaS, Security, Data and Analytics, Digital, Professional Services and Transformation. We’re consistently thought of as the go to option because we really can ‘do it all’.

I also think the fact that we never rest on our laurels and keep expanding our capabilities and support is keeping customers loyal. New developments, such as Kubernetes-as-a-Service (KaaS) and our recent addition of Salesforce capabilities through our acquisition of Relation Edge, are bringing Fanatical Experience to our customers’ evolving demands.

To demonstrate Fanatical Experience, driven by results obsessed Rackers, we intentionally held the event in our main auditorium within our EMEA HQ. We wanted the analysts to experience the same feeling as our customers do when they visit, providing a chance to see our culture and our approach first-hand.

While we feel that our products and services portfolio remain unrivalled in the industry, we acknowledge that being fanatical across all offerings and customer experiences is key to continued success.

There was a lot of interest in our acquisition strategy, with our three recent purchases of Datapipe, TriCore and RelationEdge in focus during the day. We are very pleased to have received positive feedback from the analysts who attended, with notable mentions including going away with “an updated and better understanding of how Rackspace perceives the multi-cloud world and of its shift towards an IT-as-a-Service approach.”

This is exactly how we want to be seen, with our mission to be recognised as the world’s ‘IT-as-a-Service leader’ that can drive digital transformation for our customers.

It was also very encouraging to hear that our forward-looking approach resonated, with praise from the analysts on “how much Rackspace has evolved and grown out of its initial core business” and “the competencies across all hyper-scale providers, putting the company front and centre in the cloud business from the customer perspective.”

You’ll find key takeaways below, providing an overall flavour of the Analyst Day. If you’d like more detail on this or anything not covered here, feel free to get in touch with me directly.

 AWS

  • More than doubled our EMEA customer base in 2017, growing by 240%
  • Cost optimisation services delivered more than $2m of customer savings in 2017
  • Recently rated a rare 100% score in our second annual MSP audit
  • 350+ AWS certifications and 16 AWS Masters in EMEA

Google Cloud Platform 

  • Growing specialisms across a number of verticals including retail, eGaming and financial services
  • For example, one mobile gaming client sought regional expansion, fast speed to market, support with compliance and regulation, and internal education. The business has now launched in new region using a managed GCP solution. Customer Reliability Engineering (CRE) workshops were kicked off to support business enablement and education within the business

Azure

  • Azure with Rackspace has seen 3.5x growth in monthly recurring revenue (MRR) and its customer base double
  • Customer success stories include a major retail point-of-sale application which was re-platformed to Azure. This saw 6x growth in MRR over four months
  • 2018 Microsoft Partner of the Year runner up

Rackspace Managed Security (RMS)

  • RMS in EMEA represents 25% of our global RMS customer base, with approximately 40% of new deals from EMEA in 2017
  • Customer success stories include People HR, which took ‘gold standard’ RMS to protect its business and clients, against a backdrop of the new regulatory requirements outlined under GDPR. People HR worked with the RMS team to take a security first approach to secure their business and data.

Professional Services

  • Revenue and bookings grew roughly 70% year on year
  • In 2018, we’re expecting to more than double this again
  • Success stories include online retailer Internet Fusion, who we helped to plan and manage a migration to AWS. The project created isolated development and product environments that created a seamless, automated and secure process enabling them to promote new features and customers on their online stores. This ultimately drove business value thanks to record Black Friday sales in November 2017.

Rackspace Private Cloud

  • More than 1 billion server hours of experience operating clouds at scale
  • Expansion to new platforms, including Kubernetes-as-a-Service, enabling future proofed choices that support the broadest range of workloads, delivering significant efficiencies in cost, training, and operations.

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