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Microsoft led enterprise IT pack in revenue growth terms over past decade, research shows

In the final despatch from Synergy Research Group's look back at the IT trends that shaped the past decade, Microsoft emerges as the tech firm that managed to grow its enterprise revenue share the most throughout the 2010s

Microsoft succeeded in generating more enterprise revenue growth than any other IT supplier over the course of the past decade, according to data from Synergy Research Group.

The market watcher has released a series of reports as part of its look-back over some of the tech mega-trends that have shaped IT spending patterns over the course of the past decade.

This is the last in the series, and looks at how the IT supplier landscape has altered over the course of the past 10 years, as the likes of Amazon and Google have risen to prominence in the enterprise, at the expense of some incumbent, legacy suppliers whose fortunes have waned over the same period.

“In many ways, the 2019 enterprise IT market is almost unrecognisable from the one of 2009. Some 10 years ago Amazon and Google had hardly any presence in the enterprise sector and Salesforce was still in its early days. In 2019, those three collectively generated over $60bn in revenues from enterprises,” said John Dinsdale, chief analyst at Synergy Research Group.

The review is particularly concerned with highlighting suppliers that have succeeded in growing their enterprise sector revenue by more than $10bn in the 10 years to 2020, which includes Huawei, Amazon, Dell, Cisco and Salesforce.

The leader in this group, though, is software giant Microsoft, which has spent much of the past decade building out both its cloud software and infrastructure proposition for enterprises, exemplified by the growth of its Office 365 online business productivity suite of products, and its public cloud platform Azure.

This work has contributed towards Microsoft achieving enterprise revenue growth in the region of almost $50bn in that time, with Synergy describing the firm as an example of a tech firm that has succeeded in considerably growing its share of the enterprise market over the past decade.

Before the start of 2010, Microsoft already had a sizeable enterprise presence, but the same cannot be said of a number of others name-checked in the Synergy Research Group review document.

“In 2009, Microsoft was already one of the biggest sellers of enterprise technology, but over 10 years it has grown those revenues by almost 150% to become by far the biggest player in the sector,” added Dinsdale.

“Huawei has grown dramatically thanks to its booming local market and targeting of new regions and product segments, while Dell has absorbed some big name vendors and Cisco has steadily increased its networking and collaboration business lines. We now enter the new decade with a revamped list of major tech companies serving enterprise customers.”

That list also includes the likes of Amazon and Google, and various suppliers in the original design manufacturers (ODM) hardware category.

Similar to Microsoft, Amazon Web Services (AWS) and Google have – to varying degrees – both reaped the benefits of cloud becoming a more accepted way for enterprises to consume IT services over the past 10 years.

This, in turn, has seen the demand for ODM kit, as both the hyperscale cloud and internet providers opt to use their technology to kit out their datacentres and server farms for cost, performance and specification reasons.

According to Synergy Research Group’s data, ODMs are now – in aggregate – generating around $17bn on the back of these sales, which is up from “virtually zero” a year ago.

“In aggregate, the eight technology vendors [referenced in the report] plus ODMs tripled their annual enterprise sector revenues over the decade, reaching $320bn,” the market watcher said, in a research note.

“While most of them acquired companies during the period, the great majority of the revenue increase came from organic growth – the one big exception being Dell, whose 2016 acquisition of both EMC and VMware more than doubled its revenues in the enterprise sector.”

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