The keynote this year was delivered by Whitney Tidmarsh, VP for Marketing, with a little help from some of her friends. The format was a TV chat show with Whitney taking on the role of the host. Whitney opened with a 5 minute whirlwind of the past 12 months with comments about Barack Obama, the Beijing Olympics, the Global Economy and Nicolas Sarkozy and Carla Bruni.
Her first guest was John O’Melia, VP for EMEA, who gave an introduction and a summary of where EMC CMA are, note there was no use of the word Documentum. John portrayed a positive picture of the business and suggested good growth for CMA an an increasing share of the marketplace. He also talked about some of the things which have happened in the past 12 months including the acquisition of Dokumentum Services, the Russian SI, the acquisition of Document Sciences, the Documentum output product and the release of 6.5. John then set out some of his ambitions for 2009 including better partnering, and a focus on Solution Frameworks for improved return for customer.
Next up was the meat of the keynote, Mark Lewis, President of CMA. The core of his talk was on Information Intelligence and the four pillars which he sees supporting this:
Convergence – bring information together, assimilating information from different business areas and of different types
Compliance – this will continue to drive the needs of customers to adopt ECM, in fact Mark predicted a rise of this compliance as a result of the global downturn (a view which is shared by many people)
Context – how information is important but its usefulness is driven by the context in which in it is being presented and being consumed
Community – this was around how communities now get formed in many different ways, very much around the Facebook style of community, and how the EMC products can support these communities to ensure they can work effectively in support of business goals
Mark also touched on the global downturn and made a commitment that this is the time to invest, through investment now he believes EMC, their partners and their customers will be in the right position to ride the upturn as and when that happens. Building on John’s earlier talk about performance in 2008 this was a confident message from EMC. Mark touched on a number of other areas as well including some of the new products which EMC have including Centerstage.
The session then took a bizarre twist with the introduction of a UK based singer who was looking to make his mark in Europe, Lewis Dixon. He did a quick song and then left a sea of bemused faces.
The Elite sponsors, Accenture, then had a chance to do a presentation and this was done by their CEO of Information Management, Royce Bell.
Finally Whitney wrapped up by revealing the destination for next year’s event, Athens. All in all a good keynote if a little different; it was a full auditorium and the audience appeared to enjoy it.