VMware (NYSE:VMW) is just the latest company to join the OpenStack Foundation, an effort to build an open source cloud stack from parts first developed by NASA, then Rackspace (NYSE:RAX), and now being implemented at the latter.
Over at Infoworld, however, Blue Mountain Labs founder David Linthicum offers a harsh investment truth for those interested in the cloud at Infoworld. None of this would have happened without the success of Amazon.com (NASDAQ:AMZN).
He sums up the case here:
The meteoric rise of Amazon Web Services proved the viability of the public cloud marketplace. But domination by a single cloud provider scares the hell out of many organizations looking to use cloud services.
In other words, Amazon's lead in the public cloud is as wide as that of Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) in PCs back in the 1990s, as wide as that of IBM (NYSE:IBM) before the advent of the PC. Amazon.com scares the heck out of everyone.
Which is one reason why AMZN sports a PE north of 300, despite a wealth of naysayers, here at Seeking Alpha and elsewhere, who question the company's lack of profits and its ability to keep growing.
Just how wide the lead is can be seen from NASDAQ's (NASDAQ:NDAQ) new financial analytics service, built on the Amazon cloud. FinQloud us a great way for Amazon to address this regulation-intense industry, through partnerships, and points the way toward other profitable verticals, notes GigaOm.
Cloud providers are trying to move beyond OpenStack, which offers Infrastructure as a Service or IaaS functionality, and build a Platform as a Service standard. Cloud Application Management for Platforms has come forward from, among others, Oracle (NASDAQ:ORCL), Red Hat (NYSE:RHT) and Rackspace, but it's no more a market reality yet than any other non-Amazon cloud specification.
Point being, if you want to explain Amazon's market dominance, don't look to its finances, and don't look to financial journalism. Look to technology and its dominance of the public cloud.
Disclosure: I am long IBM, MSFT. I wrote this article myself, and it expresses my own opinions. I am not receiving compensation for it (other than from Seeking Alpha). I have no business relationship with any company whose stock is mentioned in this article.