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Report from Rocket U2 University 2012

Published about 9 years ago by Elkie Holland
Photo created from original at Rocket   Last week, I spent 3 days at the Rocket U2 University 2012 which was held at Carden Park near Chester. 

  It was well attended and Rocket staff from around the world flew in there in force. The attendees were a mix of contractors, software houses and end users with both management and technical staff alike. 

The U2 University was opened by Susie Siegesmund and then there was a tag team of Jackie Burhans and Dan McGrath with product updates. Over the following few days there were many workshops, presentations and labs covering a wide breadth of subjects. {{image_59_right}} 

Susie Sigesmund's opening presentation was very informative, packed with statistics, updates and some exciting news. Susie was proud to announce that Rocket have shown growth every year including through the economic strife. Rocket continues to focus on growth with plans to double or triple the size of the business within 3-5 years. They aim to do this via organic growth and acquisitions. This year they have already acquired iCluster and Passport

Rocket has been in business for 22 years and already have over 1,000 employees. The Rocket U2 team plans to recruit an additional 13 this year. Six have already been recruited with 4 of those going into development. Most of the 7 remaining will be for development too. 

Due to this growth and expected expansion, Rocket have moved to new headquarters in Boston as they outgrew the previous location. An open invitation was extended to tour their Boston briefing centre if in the Boston area. Last year Rocket reorganised the business into 4 business units:
  1. Business Intelligency and Analytics: The products in this section are: AreoText, AS, CorVu, Folio / NXT.
  2. Storage Networks and Compliance: This covers Backup and Recovery; Business Continuity; Change and Configuration management. Products include Arkivio, iCluster, Mainstar, NetCure and ServerGraph.
  3. Application Development, Integration and Modernization: The focus here is to deliver customer value in the business units. The 3 main brands here are Seagull, BlueZone and Aldon.
  4. Database Servers and Tools: Products here are M204 and U2.
Susie pointed out that for the U2 attendees, it was not so much important that they recognize all the brands but more that they understand the breadth of the business. Rocket's aim is to make all Rocket products and solutions available to all their customers and partners. Rocket are working to create new product synergies. Susie spent some time going through Gartner's Top 10 CIO Technology priorities for 2012 showing how Rocket are focused on ensuring that they are in-line with what the market is saying it wants. The figures:

  • Rocket U2 have grown from January 2010 - March 2012 they sold over 2,000 new database licences to sites, giving around 126,000 new users.
  • Maintenance renewals are at 93% and satisfaction with support team is running at 96% (based on about 42% of questionnaires completed).
  • U2 continues to grow under Rocket but has a separate P&L, thereby enabling reinvestment for growth. The U2 business grew 7% in 2010 and 5% in 2011 dispite the challenging economic times.
  • Rocket has 213 direct partners and distributors worldwide who service additional partners and end user customers. There are 500 entities offering solutions on U2 data servers.
Other points of interest:
  • There are some new success stories of applications now running successfully on the iPad and IPhone.
  • is having an overhaul again to make it a much more modern site. Completion of the U2 pages is expected by end of October.
  • Rocket are exploring other avenues to carry the MultiValue message and sent Dan McGrath to present at the NoSQL Event in Cologne, Germany on 27 May 2012.
  • U2NETDK is a new product and Rocket has other new products coming for U2 customers. Rocket feels the pressures are real and looking to see how they can help their customers and partners maintain their valuable investments in existing applications and busines logic rather than changing. Rocket feel that it is good news that lots of customers are looking to add mobile, web front ends etc.
  • Focus groups are going to be introduced this year along with the continuance of Early Adopter and Beta programs.
The UK U2 University was sponsored by:
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