What? A dozen analysts from 5 different firms all agree? No way!
I didn’t think it would ever be possible for a dozen analysts to ever agree to anything let alone 12 analysts from 5 different firms. At the OpenStack Summit in Barcelona over the past 3 days we met with 12 analysts from Gartner, Forrester, IDC, Ovum, and ESG, we spent a few minutes talking about all the momentum of OpenStack in general then discussed SUSE’s momentum and SUSE OpenStack7. We were met with varying degrees of agreement on most topics. However the one thing they all agreed to is that of nearly a hundred vendors trying to make a business out of OpenStack only two or three have the business model for long term sustainability and success in delivering an enterprise level subscription.
There is a big difference in the business model of proprietary software vendors and open source software vendors, and I have yet to see a proprietary vendor have broad appeal to customers when they jump into the open source business and try to shift sales, support, engineering, and other infrastructure of the company to fit an open source model. These factors inhibit bigger software or hardware vendors from succeeding. So, that narrows the field down very quickly to Red Hat, and SUSE. Both have been in business with an open source business model for decades and both have experience delivering open source subscriptions to large enterprises.
SUSE prides itself on being an Open, open source company and Red Hat prides itself on being big enough to be everything to everyone.