Kloud on Cloud

By Toby Bowers, Cloud & Enterprise Business Group Lead, Microsoft Australia

Earlier today, we announced the launch of the Microsoft Azure Geo in Australia. This is a landmark moment for Microsoft in Australia, but we’re even more excited about the difference that the new Geo will make to our customers and partners as they transform their businesses in a cloud age.

We’ve been catching up with a number of our partners ahead of the Azure Geo launch to learn how the platform is helping them to thrive in our mobile-first, cloud-first world.

One of our fastest growing partners in Australia is Kloud, who live and breathe technology – so much so that staff call themselves “Kloudies”. The firm primarily provides secure physical and digital storage services to customers from the finance, insurance, banking and government sectors, and prides itself on helping businesses implement innovative projects and exploit technologies such as Microsoft’s cloud offerings.

“We’re obsessed with enhancing the customer experience, and we measure ourselves by customer loyalty,” said Nicki Bowers, Kloud’s CEO. “We have an ambitious target of becoming Australia’s top cloud services provider, and while we’re making great strides in realising this we’ve still got a way to go.”

Over the last four years, Kloud has grown quickly and recently added an office in Manila, the Philippines, to its premises in Adelaide, Melbourne and Sydney.

“We would like to double in size every 18 months,” Ms Bowers said. “In three years’ time I’d be happy if we were 300 to 500 people to help our customers move to the cloud.”

Connected, integrated and low cost customer solutions

When it comes to Microsoft Azure, Kloud is already a huge advocate of the platform, which enables it to provide connected, integrated and low-cost solutions for its customers. From accelerating web, mobile, and enterprise application envisioning, development and deployment through to identity and access management systems that help shift customers to a cloud-enabled world, Kloud is experienced in delivering huge business benefits with Microsoft Azure.

“Microsoft Azure is the only cloud platform that helps us create, build, debug, run, and package our customer solutions with the development tools, such as Visual Studio and Visual Studio Online, which keep us agile, nimble, and responsive as a software development consulting business,” she said.

“With Microsoft managing patching, hardware failures, and network issues, we can focus on our apps and customers don’t have to focus on their infrastructure.”

Keen participant in the private preview

In keeping with its zeal for customer service, Kloud has been a keen participant in the private preview program for Microsoft Azure’s data centres in Australia. “That’s been a real driver for us to start thinking about how the local data centre can drive new opportunities for our customers,” Ms Bowers said.

The firm’s participation has enabled it to actively test scenarios it had only previously been able to measure theoretically. It has also gained insight into Microsoft’s process in developing regional data centres, including direct access to the engineering and service teams which provision and troubleshoot Azure services.

The launch of the Australian data centres also prompted Kloud to scale up its skills, with about one new team member coming on board each week and existing employees being trained in different aspects of Azure.

This included ensuring the business had the skills to manage Azure ExpressRoute, which enables companies to create private connections between the Microsoft Azure cloud and on-premises or co-located infrastructure.

Applications, integration and identity top three conversations

One of the drivers for the launch of Microsoft Azure Geo in Australia is to open up a whole new range of capabilities. As such, it was great to hear how the pending launch of Microsoft Azure and the growing maturity of the cloud market has stimulated keen interest from Kloud customers and prospects. Ms Bowers said the three top conversations she has with customers revolve around how to securely develop cloud-ready and cloud-aware applications, how to integrate applications in Azure with on-premise applications and how to provide a consistent identity for users on-premises and in the cloud.

For new Azure customers, Kloud offers a migration quick-start that enables organisations to assess their candidate workloads and perform migrations of them to Azure Australia data centres. For existing Azure customers, who are already running workloads in overseas Azure data centres, Kloud can also help them with migrating these existing workloads to the on-shore data centres

Overall, more Kloud customers and prospects are considering ‘lifting and shifting’ their entire datacentres into the cloud, and Ms Bowers considers these opportunities as “the exciting ones.”

“[The cloud] is just kicking off and we’re in a prime position to lead the curve for our customers,” she said.

It’s pleasing to see the level of customer interest Kloud is already seeing for cloud services. With the launch of the Azure Geo in Australia, this interest will grow. Kloud’s passion and expertise make it a great choice for organisations looking for a cloud partner.

Read more about Microsoft’s Australian Azure Geo here.


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