Microsoft’s Satya Nadella Talks About The Future Of Server And Tools Division

Satya Nadella

Satya Nadella is president of Microsoft Corporation’s Server and Tools Business (STB), a US$19 billion division that builds and runs the company’s computing platforms, developer tools and cloud services.  To put the $19 billion in perspective, it is greater than the combined revenues of Facebook, Yahoo, LinkedIn, Zynga, Netflix and a few other tech companies.  When Nadella was asked about this large number he commented, “We’re only doing 19 billion of 2.2 trillion dollars of IT.”

Nadella is an extremely interesting person and longtime Microsoft insider, he joined Microsoft in 1992 and has now been working at the company for over 20 years.  Nadella is a native of Hyderabad, India, he has a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering from Mangalore University, a master’s degree in computer science from the University of Wisconsin and an MBA from the University of Chicago.

He recently gave an interview with VentureBeat:

Q: What are the key initiatives that your division is working on?

Satya Nadella: One of the divisions I run is the infrastructure side of Microsoft, and whenever you run infrastructure the best way to stay grounded is to look at the applications that are being built for the next generation. In our case, historically what has shaped what our division does is our own applications — for example, Exchange, Lync, or SharePoint. Now, in this next era, things like Xbox Live, Bing, Office 365 are defining what we’re doing in infrastructure.

So there are four specific things that we’re working on: One is the modern data center because now you’re managing compute, storage, and network as a unit at data center and multi data center scale. People refer to it as a software driven data center, and to us that’s a key part. Next layer is the data… we need to have a very first class data platform. Then above that, you have to have a very modern application platform for building mobile, social, and data driven applications. Lastly, we want to make all these applications available on any device while giving IT the ability to secure the access and the data. These four things are what we call the “Cloud OS.”

Q: What is Microsoft’s future roadmap? And, how do you see your division playing out in the bigger picture?

Nadella: We broadly as a company are moving from a software company to a devices and services company, and that’s really the transformation, both in terms of technology and delivery – as well as business model. What I do, what our division does is very central to this. We’re providing all of the infrastructure for all of the services that are enabled across both the consumer and the enterprise space in the company.

How do you think cloud is changing the buying decisions of corporate customers?  Talking of “cloud” in Microsoft’s context, how’s the adoption of Windows Azure been? Can you share some numbers and statistics around it? How does it compare to Amazon Web Services? How is mobile and BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) influencing the server business?

Read answers for the above at VentureBeat.