There's an interesting survey of Red Hat's partners by Bank of America that crossed my desk recently. Ok, I admit, I have been burried for the last couple of months; the survey was from June and I should have picked up on it earlier since it's been covered by both Forbes and Matt Asay's blog over at InfoWorld. (Ok, I don't usually find Forbes all that great a read; too old school for me. But how did I miss Matt's posting?) Still, it's quite interesting reading, especially in light of Red Hat's introduction of a software stack.
Bank of America Securities spoke to 130 Red Hat partners across all geographies to get a better sense of the trends around open source business in general and Red Hat in particular. This includes a wide range of VARs, System Integrators, Distributors and some ISVs. While it's hard not to draw conclusions from this survey, there were some items that definitely jumped out at me. Here's a few highlights from the survey:
- Overall Red Hat partners expect their revenue to continue to grow by around 30% per year.
- One third expect Red Hat to continue to dominate and one third expect SuSE will gain ground.
- 45% see customers migrating from Windows compared to 19% from Solaris
- 49% expect to see a positive impact to their business from Red Hat's acquisition of JBoss
- 55% have moderate interest in non-OS products (e.g. GFS, Directory etc.)
- 85% see a strong interest in their customers' interest in open source databases
In particular, it seems that a lot of partners (around 55%) are seeing moderate interest in the non-OS offerings from Red Hat including their Global File System and Directory system. Even more interesting, is that 85% see a strong interest among their customers in open source databases. While this is in some ways a natural impact of the growing acceptance of the LAMP stack, it's notable that there's more interest in open source databases than in application servers (42%), CRM solutions (24%) or Business Intelligence (15%) combined.
I suspect that much of this information is not specific to Red Hat but is equally applicable to Linux in general. I'm not sure if the full report is available online from Bank of America Securities, but it was published June 19 by Kirk Materne and Trey Kuppin in New York. If you've got contacts at BofA you can probably get it through them. Or refer to the summaries below in Forbes and on Matt Asay's InfoWorld blog.