Red Hat announces New CEO last month When it promoted 16-year veteran Matt Hicks, he had been on the job for a few weeks. His predecessor, Paul Cormier, stepped down to take on the role of chairman.
Making such a transition is no mean feat, but Hicks has his longtime mentor Cormier to fall back on because he can red hat reins. In his new role, Hicks must move the company forward and make his mark on things while reassuring customers and employees that the company’s leadership will remain stable.
For the most part, Hicks said he will continue down the same path as Cormier. Since buying Red Hat for $34 billion in 2018, IBM has allowed Red Hat to remain largely independent. IBM sells Red Hat services to leverage its sales clout, but Red Hat has remained independent, with many partners besides IBM.
As Cormier said in a May interview about his relationship with IBM CEO Arvind Krishna: “Arvind’s description of Red Hat is that IBM will be opinionated to support Red Hat, but not the other way around. .. then this means that IBM has fully standardized Red Hat as [company’s] Hybrid platform,” Cormier said.
Under Cormier’s leadership, Red Hat helped IBM return to growth after a long period of stagnation. Big Blue’s revenue rose 9% in its most recent earnings report last month.Red Hat grew 12% and made a significant contribution to IBM’s growth strategy
Hicks has a responsibility to keep it that way while taking Red Hat to the next step. I spoke with him recently about the transition into his new role and what this means for all parties involved, from clients and employees to parent company IBM.