90 per cent of software giant's R&D to focus on cloud

Microsoft: ?Join us in the Cloud?

Microsoft is urging UK businesses to take up more cloud-based business models, following its recent Worldwide Partner Conference in Washington DC, in which it outlined its new cloud computing business strategy.

With a record audience of over 10,000 partners and a further 2,000 staff, Microsoft’s top executives laid out a plan that will virtually transform the way the company operates, essentially turning it into the world’s largest cloud services provider.

“The main message that has come from the event is really about the opportunity that’s ahead of us in the cloud and the transformation that we’re driving with our partners,” Microsoft UK’s director of partner programmes and strategies, Clare Barclay, told PCR.

“We believe that it presents a phenomenal opportunity for the channel and for Microsoft. The theme of the conference is that MS is making a very significant commitment and strategic direction with the cloud and we want our partners to come with us on that journey.”

Microsoft has already invested 70 per cent of its product development and engineering resources into creating its cloud offering, and that proportion is expected to rise to 90 per cent, or $9.5 billion, over the next twelve months. It has developed two partner programme Cloud Essentials, which is the cloud version of its Action Packs, and the more in-depth version, Cloud Accelerate to give its partners the support they need to make the change.

“We’re evolving ourselves to become a cloud services company. That’s the strategic direction,” said Barclay. “This is a change for us and it’s going to be a change for them and we want to ensure that we’re here to support them. We’re a partner led company, and we’re only successful because our partners are successful, so we’ve got to make sure that as we make this change we’re supporting our partners all the way.”

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