Oct 272015

Opening the first official day of Oracle Open World, CEO Mark Hurd spoke with James Fowler, the Chief Information Officer of General Electric about the company’s digital transformation.

Fowler described how the company intends to be driving $15 billion in revenues from its digital operation in the face of stagnant industrial spending.

Earlier in the presentation Hurd had described the problem of stagnant spending facing all major industrial companies, whether they are enterprise software providers like Oracle or engineering organisations like GE, where companies are ‘sweating the assets’ ruthlessly.

For GE, making a compelling argument for companies to reinvest in new capital equipment is essential while Oracle is facing an industry wide decline in revenues and a structural shift to cloud technologies which Hurd described in stark tones.

Last year, he claims, the major tech companies saw a gross decline of $16.4 billion in revenues while cloud services only picked up by billion meaning the market shrank by fifteen billion dollars.

That decline would deeply worry a salesperson like Hurd given the declining market means smaller commissions and fewer sales so it’s unsurprising the company is pivoting as hard as it can into the cloud.

GE on the other hand is making a huge bet on the future of its market by proactively shifting onto digital and cloud services.

The challenge though for all these companies is making money from these new business models those who figure it out will be the industrial giants of the next century. There’s no guarantee any of today’s will be among them.

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