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‘Truly Inspirational:’ After COVID-19 Diagnosis, Antonio Neri Goes All Out For HPE Discover Virtual

‘It was truly inspirational to all of us in the partner community,’ says PKA Technologies Vice President of Sales Paul Cohen. ‘Antonio didn’t miss a beat during HPE Discover Virtual. He was clear, concise and laser-focused on his messaging to partners. It’s really important to us to know that he is committed to the channel.’

Hewlett Packard Enterprise CEO Antonio Neri -- who tested positive for COVID-19 on June 16 -- brought the same indefatigable spirit and drive to HPE Discover Virtual that partners have come to expect during live appearances in Las Vegas at the HPE customer and partner mega-event.

HPE partners said the full court HPE Discover Virtual press by Neri – who told press and analysts before the show that he was “feeling much, much better” – was short of inspirational.

“It was great to have Antonio on the Global Partner Summit call and to see him doing so well,” said Paul Cohen, vice president of sales for New York-based PKA Technologies, one of HPE’s top Platinum enterprise partners, “It was truly inspirational to all of us in the partner community. Antonio didn’t miss a beat during HPE Discover Virtual. He was clear, concise and laser-focused on his messaging to partners. It’s really important to us to know that he is committed to the channel. HPE has always been the most partner friendly company we work with. It’s great to see Antonio continue to drive improvements with the channel community.”

Neri’s HPE Discover Virtual keynote address in which he unveiled the next generation of HPE GreenLake cloud services and the Ezmeral open source, container and AI based machine learning platform was viewed by more than 750,000 people.

Neri ended the week with an all-team member meeting for HPE’s 60,000 employees.

Jack Margossian, president and CEO of Comport Consulting, an HPE Platinum partner, No. 314 on the CRN SP500, said he was heartened to see Neri doing well during HPE Discover Virtual and grateful that Neri participated in a Comport webinar the day he revealed the COVID-19 diagnosis.

“It was 6 a.m. for Antonio and he did it for us,” said Margossian. “He cares about helping the partners grow their businesses. That’s really important. He’s doing well for all of us. He is functioning and doing the things he needs to do to run the business.”

Neri -- whose 14-day quarantine period will end on July 1 -- delivered the HPE Discover Virtual keynote address and participated in numerous sessions all from his California home.

Before his keynote address, Neri joked that he “learned to set up” his own production studio. “But joking aside, this is a very serious virus and I feel fortunate that I am well enough to join you at HPE Discover,” he said.

In the press and analysts session, Neri said he is already a week into his “recovery” and thanked all of those who have sent emails and texts wishing him well.

“I have been quarantined in my home in San Jose and am feeling much better,” he said. “At this point I believe -based on how I feel- it was a mild case and really am well into my recovery. There is a lot to be grateful for and I am really thankful to the health providers. We have a fantastic hospital and clinic here that have been following me throughout this (diagnosis). It reminds you of how important what they do for us is as individuals and society.”

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