Cloud giant VMware names Irishman Ray O’Farrell its CTO and CDO

27 Aug 2015

Ray O'Farrell, VMware's new CTO and CDO

Just as VMware marks 10 years in Ireland the virtualisation giant has promoted Limerick native Ray O’Farrell to the roles of chief technology officer and chief development officer.

In the combined CTO and CDO roles O’Farrell will be responsible for orchestration across all of VMware’s R&D business units and he will lead VMware’s CTO team.

Prior to this O’Farrell served as general manager of the Software-Defined Data Centre Division of VMware.

The appointment is effective immediately and O’Farrell will continue to report to Pat Gelsinger, VMware chief executive officer.

“As VMware continues to evolve its research and development efforts, Ray O’Farrell will work in close partnership with our business unit leaders and world-class R&D teams to drive industry-leading innovation,” Gelsinger said.

“He brings extensive and invaluable experience in managing a wide range of our global R&D teams as well as developing and releasing many of our most impactful products.”

O’Farrell joined VMware in 2003 and has led development teams across the entire VMware global R&D footprint and product portfolio.

He has more than 20 years’ experience in software engineering and prior to joining VMware he led development teams at Microtec/Mentor-Graphics, Improv Systems and Ashling Microsystems.

VMware marks 10 years in Ireland

O’Farrell’s appointment coincided with VMware marking its first decade in Ireland, where it has grown from 10 to 750 employees.

The company now has a five-building campus in Cork and an office in Dublin – and VMware expects to expand to a further building on the Barrack square, Ballincollig campus in October 2015.

Since becoming involved in the Job Bridge scheme in 2010, VMware has trained 130 candidates, with more than 100 of the trainees recruited to VMware for full-time, permanent employment. The company is currently training a further 30 graduates and Job Bridge applicants to take up technical support positions over the next six months.

VMware has also partnered with Cork Institute of Technology (CIT) to develop the world’s first suite of Master’s and Undergraduate degree programs in cloud computing, with the first graduates conferred in May 2013.

“Our Irish operations are an important part of VMware’s European business, the strong growth we have seen over the past 10 years and the opening of the new Cork office in October demonstrates the continued importance of our operations in Ireland,” said Jean-Pierre Brulard, senior vice president and general manager, VMware EMEA.

“We’re dedicated to helping some of Ireland’s largest organisations digitally transform their businesses, both from an infrastructure and business mobility perspective. We’re also committed to our people and the local community, whether that’s by helping local charities, encouraging more people into the IT industry or supporting students at the Cork Institute of Technology,” Brulard said.

VMware was acquired by parent company EMC in 2003 for US$623m and it has since transpired that, since VMware’s stock is now valued much higher than EMC’s, it may have the option of acquiring EMC’s 80pc ownership.

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years