back to article Vodafone signs $550m deal with IBM to offload cloud biz

Vodafone is offloading its cloud and hosting unit to IBM in a $550m eight-year outsourcing deal that will include up to 750 staff packing their bags as they're sent off to new employer Big Blue, sources say. A Voda employee rep is to be elected from the start of February and consultation with the telco's HR, management, and …

  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    From Red to Blue

    Rumours that the affected staff will have to wear bells around their neck and call out "unclean, unclean" as they wander the corridors of Voda Towers are unfounded.

    (Thats Ginny's plan for next year).

    In all seriousness if I were the Voda staff impacted I would be looking to bail before they are pushed.

    I can quite easily see IBM's customer facing cloud offerings going the way of the Thinkpad in <5 years. Obviously they will keep an internal offering, but they are hardly cutting edge are they?

    1. Alistair Silver badge
      Windows

      Re: From Red to Blue

      Umm.

      "I can quite easily see IBM's customer facing cloud offerings going the way of the Thinkpad in <5 years. Obviously they will keep an internal offering, but they are hardly cutting edge are they? "

      I worked at IBM. I can tell you about IBM and "cloud". I've moved on. And moved on again. And been bought by IBM. Again. There's a very simple reason IBM bought RedHat. IBM can't cloud. doesn't cloud.

      To the Voda folks; polish resume, get a nice outfit to do interviews, and start looking now. Stick with it until they offer to buy you out and dive out the door with the redundancy pay and a new job waiting. And be prepared to end up in the same space in 5 to 8 years.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: From Red to Blue

        Anyone who has endured the Maximo ordeal knows an orchestrator should be anything but Maximo.

    2. Roland6 Silver badge

      Re: From Red to Blue

      >I can quite easily see IBM's customer facing cloud offerings going the way of the Thinkpad in <5 years.

      Are Lenovo interested in cloud?

  2. Flakk Silver badge

    Up to 750 staff transferring to Big Blue. Good luck people... you might need it

    They'll be fine if they're not older than 50.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Up to 750 staff transferring to Big Blue. Good luck people... you might need it

      Nope...

      They'll be fine if they get given a role almost immediately. If they keep their existing role, expect to be one of the 70+% who leave or are let go in the first 12 months, rising to around 90% by 24 months...

  3. Rosie

    Ah, that's a shit thing. I'm stating the bleeding obvious here folks - but this isn't going to end well Voda people.

    Having been vacuumed up early 2015 (along with 400+ globally), being force fed the cringe inducing BS from an assortment of Watson conditioned pin-headed weasel-bots, being spat out 15 months later having my soul sucked out of me by a know-it-all team of humourless offshore assassin bots, it was the most unpleasant period of my working life - it was a relief to get my hands on my redundancy payment and walk out of the door. There are no more then a couple of dozen of my ex-colleagues at IBM globally so the odds of survival beyond a couple of years aren't good.

    On the brightside pretty much all of my pre-IBM chums are working, so it's not all bad.

    You have my heartfelt sympathy, hold on tight and try to maintain a sense of humour, and polish up the old LinkedIn page.

    Good luck.

    1. GruntyMcPugh Silver badge

      Re: "Watson conditioned pin-headed weasel-bots"

      @Rosie ... I literally did LOL.

  4. rcw88

    Well you can see how that's going to end. Q here for your P45. You don't have to be over 50, just working in the UK will do.

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Migration time

    "Existing Vodafone customers will not be "compelled" to move to the new solutions, but migration will be in play where necessary."

    Unless you consider terrible service and development stopping on existing products being compelling reasons.

    If you thought Vodafone couldn't do cloud, you might want to reassess that after you see how IBM does it...

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Some may be terminated, but most will be assigned to an IBM labor camp.

    How fortunate... just get by one day at a time.

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Vodafone cloud

    Vodafone had a cloud offering? Who knew?

  8. ma1010 Silver badge
    Unhappy

    FTFY

    "Being a spare part at IBM isn't a good place to be," said one.

    My heart goes out to those affected. If it were me, I'd be spending the weekend getting the resume done and posted, and then start looking for openings. Good luck to all!

  9. defiler Silver badge

    Outsourced downsizing

    That's all IBM means to me any more - a professional downsizing and redundancy system. Voda have just outsourced.

    Good luck to those in the inevitable firing line.

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Any update on how the RedHat people are liking their new bosses?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Considering IBM recommended we use SUSE over RedHat in our recent discussion I'd say there is room for improvement in the relationship?

  11. Oodles of Noodles

    Bacon Butties

    I used to do a shed load of lecturing and course development at Hursley.

    I sooo miss the bacon butties that the staff restaurant people made there.

    Should IBM ever go tits-up, I believe that the sarnies should take pride of place next to the Winchester hard drive for IBM accomplishments.

    I know which one I would prefer to eat.

  12. Flicker

    Blame it on David....

    Isn't this just the final, dismal chapter of David Young's destruction of Cable & Wireless? Although less dramatic and more drawn out than George Simpson's wrecking of Marconi it's a graphic demonstration of the damage corporate psychopaths can do to a decent company. I feel sorry for the C&W, latterly Voda employees caught up in this mess but the writing was on the wall in 1995.

    https://www.independent.co.uk/news/business/five-years-of-crossed-lines-at-cable-wireless-1582359.html

    1. devTrail

      Re: Blame it on David....

      The story of the psychopaths is a way to concentrate the attention of few people and cover up the larger group. The management structure of a big company is complex and the plundering at the high levels is so widespread and systematic that it must involve a big group. Anyway it's not just Cable & Wireless, you can add to the picture Mannesmann since the operations of the cloud services are shared between the UK and Germany (Düsseldorf). You can add to the picture Omnitel the Italian operator that was acquired by Mannesmann before being acquired by Vodafone, it provided part of the workforce.

      1. Flicker

        Re: Blame it on David....

        @devTrail - "The story of the psychopaths is a way to concentrate the attention of few people and cover up the larger group...."

        Absolutely agree, certainly to the extent that the habit of keeping senior managements' snouts firmly in the trough at the expense of the wider company is now so firmly ingrained that it's almost a given. That said, I think there's quite a bit of evidence that David Young and George Simpson both had very significant personal responsibility for major and ultimately disasterous changes in corporate strategy, linked to a combative, take-no-prisoners style which justifies the branding..

  13. devTrail

    Double luck

    The IBM rate of acquisitions and dumping is getting so fast that sooner or later we'll begin to see people going through the same experience twice or trice.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Double luck

      Just like HP right?

      I see plenty of long-time IBMers defending their employer on LinkedIn, utterly brainwashed. I firmly believe that it is a dying brand and a dying culture, but shuffling out the greybeards (while indefensible) might be the only way to lose the mindset which holds IBM back.

      FWIW, I remember clearly being told (in 1997) by a very senior IBMer that "IBM has not decided whether to embrace the internet or not"...

  14. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

    invited to move

    Invited? Really? What happens if none none of them RSVP?

  15. hottuberrol

    Surprised it took this long. Any business unit created in Voda that isnt about selling more consumer sim cards automatically sparks a case of organ-rejection. And I'm willing to wager a week's pay that the quid-pro-quo here is that Voda will win (or has recently won) a chunk of IBM's mobile connectivity business in Europe,

  16. steviebuk Silver badge

    So...

    ... that's all the over 40s on a watch list and over 50s ready for the chop.

  17. adam payne Silver badge

    Vodafone is offloading its cloud and hosting unit to IBM in a $550m eight-year outsourcing deal that will include up to 750 staff packing their bags as they're sent off to new employer Big Blue, sources say. If those 750 staff had any sense they'd be looking for new employment.

  18. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    And the difference is...

    Some feel that Vodafone has failed to understand the cloud and this limited innovation and the speed of execution.

    And they're going to ***IBM*** to get it?????

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