HPE CEO Antonio Neri announced today (March 2, 2021) the appointment of Justin Hotard as general manager of HPC, mission critical solutions and labs, effective immediately. Hotard replaces long-time Cray exec Pete Ungaro, who came to HPE in 2019 through the company’s acquisition of Cray. HPE says the change was made after Ungaro announced his intention to leave the company in April. Ungaro will stay on in a consulting capacity for six months.
Hotard joined HPE in 2015 as vice president of strategy for the datacenter infrastructure group and worked closely with the HPC and MCS teams that led the acquisition of HPC systems company SGI (bought by HPE in 2016). He became vice president and general manager of hyperscale and OEM solutions in early 2017, and also served as the president and managing director of HPE Japan, where he was responsible for HPC and MCS system business for that region. Most recently as senior vice president of corporate transformation, Hotard played a key role in the acceleration of HPE’s as-a-service pivot, according to Neri.
Prior to HPE, Hotard held executive positions at NCR and Symbol Technologies. And according to his LinkedIn profile, he received an MBA from the MIT Sloan School of Management and a bachelor of science degree in electrical engineering from the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign.
In his new role, Hotard reports directly to CEO Neri.
“A seasoned leader, Justin has broad and extensive experience that makes him the right person to lead this critical business and team forward,” the CEO said in a blog post.
The HPC and MCS business is a growth driver for HPE and strategic to the company’s outlook. “It’s an area where we have clear differentiation, made even stronger through our acquisition and integration of Cray Inc in 2019,” said Neri.
Neri cited recent accomplishments for the company’s HPC division, such as the introduction of HPC as-a-service through HPE GreenLake and the launch of the Spaceborne-2 supercomputer, which was sent into orbit for use aboard the International Space Station last month.
Departing exec Pete Ungaro served as president and CEO of Cray Inc. from 2005 until HPE’s acquisition of the company in September 2019 for $1.3 billion. With Ungaro at the helm, Cray pulled off an exascale hat trick, clinching three exascale supercomputing contracts with the DOE (one with Intel as prime), as well as several other big system wins (e.g., Perlmutter at NERSC).
After the acquisition, Ungaro led the integration of the two companies, resulting in a merged portfolio that maintained the Cray brand and centered Cray’s supercomputing technology as HPE’s pinnacle HPC offering.
HPE continues to rack up big HPC system wins, among them a massive weather forecasting system at National Center for Atmospheric Research, and the recently unveiled Dammam 7 supercomputer for Saudi Aramco.
The forthcoming 550-petaflops Finnish EuroHPC system, LUMI, will be built by HPE, as will another EuroHPC system, EURO IT4I, which will be deployed in the Czech Republic.
“Ungaro has made significant contributions that have positioned this business very well for continued performance and growth,” Neri stated. “We will continue to benefit from his leadership for years to come.”
Ungaro’s departure follows other former “Crayons” who have left HPE, including Steve Scott, CTO of HPC and AI, who went to Microsoft Azure over the summer, and Joe Landman, part of HPE’s HPC solutions engineering R&D group, who left in December to join Jump Trading LLC.
At the end of its first fiscal quarter ended January 31, 2021, HPE reported $6.8 billion in total revenue, outperforming its Q1 guidance. HPC & MCS revenue was $762 million, down nearly 22 percent from the previous quarter and 9 percent year over year. In sharing the latest quarterly report today, HPE noted the inherent unevenness in the HPC business, and said it remains confident in the near-term and longer-term outlook. HPE reported that the HPC & MCS segment is on track to deliver full-year FY21 growth of 8-12 percent with a healthy pipeline and over $2 billion in awarded contracts.