Posted by CRN on June 21, 2018:

When Hewlett Packard Enterprise President and CEO Antonio Neri last month visited World Wide Technology executives, the conversation naturally revolved around two topics dear to both sides: IT and cars.

WWT recently became the technology partner for Richard Petty Motorsports, and in particular for one of its drivers, Bubba Wallace, said Bob Olwig (pictured far left with Neri), vice president of corporate business development for the St. Louis-based solution provider.

"That's been a fun partnership," Olwig told CRN. "We shared that with Antonio, and he went on to tell us about how they're a technology partner to McLaren with Formula 1, and it was great sharing ideas and the different ways we can go about helping these cars go faster."

Neri was not at the World Wide Technology headquarters just to talk about increasing race car performance, but also to look at how to increase IT infrastructure performance in the two companies' common customers.

It was a visit that was greatly appreciated by WWT, Olwig said.

"I think it demonstrated, very viscerally, for World Wide, the importance that HPE is placing in the channel and partnerships," he said. "Certainly, World Wide being one of their largest partners, if not their largest partner, we appreciated him coming out to visit us relatively quick after him taking the helm. We were very honored that he wanted to come out and see us first-hand."

The format of the meeting was really a great reflection of Antonio's priorities, Olwig said.

During the first half of the day, Neri spent time with top WWT executives including Olwig and company president Joe Koenig, to learn about the investments the solution provider was making and what was resonating with customers.

Neri also provided his take on strategic initiatives and his priorities, Olwig said. "Continuing to be partner-friendly and building out programs and models to accelerate partnerships was really the top of mind for him," he said. "That was a great exchange: us sharing with him, and him sharing with us his priorities."

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