HPE CEO Antonio Neri: It Was A ‘Privilege’ To Do First-Ever Corporate Keynote At Sphere

Hewlett Packard Enterprise CEO Antonio Neri says when he decided to give the green light more than a year ago to do the first-ever corporate keynote at the Sphere before the $2.3 billion circular stadium was even completed, some were taken aback by the bold plan.

“We went and walked to the Sphere and we used hard hats because it was still not open, so we took a tour and I looked at the base and I said to the team next year we are going to do the keynote here! And they looked at me and said, ‘Are you out of your mind? How are we going to do this?’” Neri recalled in a press conference following his widely acclaimed June 18 keynote address with Nvidia CEO Jensen Huang. “I said, ‘Well, we’ll figure it out.”

Neri said it was a “privilege” to do the keynote at the Sphere because it brought the HPE marketing and communications team together on a big, bold ambitious goal. “When you establish a goal and everybody is aligned to that goal you can accomplish anything,” he said.

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Neri said he was not put off by the big stage or the dramatic setting for the keynote. He credited the team that worked with him on the presentation.ADVERTISEMENT

“Obviously it takes a lot of work,” he said. “But the creative team took my ideas and I worked with them very closely…Everything you see there is a lot of my hand in terms of the storytelling, obviously working with my amazing team writing the script. That is an integral part of the process. Otherwise there is no way to succeed.”

Neri, who started at HP 29 years ago as a customer service representative, said he was happy that HPE’s legacy as an innovator in Silicon Valley with a rich vision pushing forward with innovative breakthroughs like AI was a part of the keynote.

“I hope you appreciate that this company had a vision and we are executing that vision with precision,” he told reporters. “Six and a half years as a CEO, 29 years with the company, it has been an amazing journey for me. It is a privilege to be at this company.”

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