Moz builds its own private cloud

We spent part of 2012 and all of 2013 building a private cloud in Virginia, Washington, and mostly Texas. This was a big bet with over $4 million in capital lease obligations on the line, and the good news is that it’s starting to pay off. On a cash basis, we spent $6.2 million at Amazon Web Services, and a mere $2.8 million on our own data centers. The business impact is profound. We’re spending less and have improved reliability and efficiency. Our gross profit margin had eroded to ~64%, and as of December, it’s approaching 74%. We’re shooting for 80 %, and I know we’ll get there in 2014.

About $51,000/month on AWS for those who like to track these things by month.

Spotted by Nancy Gohring.

Moz builds its own private cloud

More on the IBM x86 divestiture rationale

As usual, TPM is extensive, starting with:

IBM is selling off the System x business, presumably because it is not profitable, but also because it is something it can sell while at the same time getting approximately 7,500 employees off its payrolls. Lenovo’s Peter Hortensius, who is president of the Think Business Group that sells servers and storage into enterprise accounts, said that buying the IBM System x business accelerated its plan to become a dominant system supplier by about five years, and would actually boost Lenovo’s profits once the deal is done. After thinking about it for a bit, I reckoned that IBM can’t get economies of scale in manufacturing and, because it doesn’t have a PC business, it lost volume pricing leverage with Intel and Advanced Micro Devices the minute it sold off the PC business to Lenovo. This had to be apparent many years ago, and the wonder is what took so long. My guess? The advent of vanity-free, custom or homemade servers have taken about a quarter of the systems market, and there went the last remains of juicy profits for IBM, which, unlike Dell and HP, does not have a play here. Those cheap servers put margin pressure on everyone in the X86 server business.

Also, check out this brief overview from 451’s M&A team, including a list of past IBM divestitures.

More on the IBM x86 divestiture rationale