Posts Tagged ‘IBM’

IBM pushes hard into the enterprise cloud

December 18th, 2014

IBM is building out its global computing network in a bid to focus on the enterprise cloud market.Outsourcing22

The company announced today that it is adding cloud centers in 11 new locations.

In a $1.2 billion investment, IBM has built cloud centers in Frankfurt, Mexico City and Tokyo. The other eight new locations come to IBM through a partnership with Equinix Inc., which operates data centers across the globe.

The partnership will give IBM access to data centers in Australia, France, Japan, Singapore, the Netherlands and the U.S., boosting IBM’s cloud network to a total of 48 cloud centers.

That growth is aimed at helping IBM grow its hybrid cloud business for enterprise clients.

“IBM recognizes that businesses and governments need the cloud to help them innovate, grow and operate more efficiently in concert with their existing IT investments,” said Robert LeBlanc, senior vice president of IBM’s software & cloud solutions group, in a statement. “Just as we helped major organizations transform in each preceding era of IT, IBM now serves as the cloud platform for the enterprise.”

This is a good move for a company that wants to court the enterprise, which is increasingly moving to the cloud, said Charles King, an analyst with Pund-IT, Inc.

“Lots of people are wondering if IBM is entering the market too late. I disagree with that,” King told Computerworld. “I think the market for cloud is not as mature as some people seem to think it is. There’s a lot of headroom in the hybrid cloud, in particular. As the market has become increasingly competitive, there’s going to be some interesting shakeouts in the months ahead.”

That shakeout should see major cloud players like Amazon, Google, Microsoft and IBM – grappling for marketshare, though King didn’t dare to guess where those top players will be a year from now.

He’s confident that IBM will continue to be a major cloud player with traditional business clients.

“You can see the other cloud players, including Amazon, making a pitch that their own services are ready for the enterprise,” said King. “IBM, though, is very well-positioned for that market right now. Markets evolve and mature in sometimes curious ways, so it will be interesting to see how IBM bears up as other companies try to invade the enterprise cloud space.”

Dan Olds, an analyst with The Gabriel Consulting Group, said IBM is putting some muscle into the game with what had to be a sizable investment in these new cloud centers.

“The cloud market is crowded and highly competitive,” Olds said. “IBM is trying to differentiate themselves through providing a higher level of service and support, along with giving customers the ability to negotiate their own service levels for their IBM clouds. Other competitors will do this as well, of course, but IBM’s experience in providing these types of services for decades through their outsourcing/hosting services arm should give them an advantage with these customers.”

Having an IBM cloud center located in their country will also give some customers the ability to use cloud computing for likely the first time, he added.

Many businesses and government organizations are not allowed to use cloud services that host their data outside their country.

“This could give these types of customers a chance to dip their toes into the cloud and see if it’s all it’s cracked up to be,” said Olds. “So, really, the key part of this announcement is the geographic spread of IBM’s cloud centers.”

Source:http://www.computerworld.com/article/2860445/ibm-pushes-hard-into-the-enterprise-cloud.html

EU clears Lufthansa outsourcing deal with IBM

December 18th, 2014

The European Commission said on Wednesday it had approved the sale of Lufthansa’s IT infrastructure unit to IBM .General view of fibre optics and cabling from behind a storage rack at the IBM booth at the CeBIT trade fair in Hanover

Lufthansa was seeking a buyer for the unit, which provides data centers, networks and telephony, because it requires a high level of investment and economies of scale, which the airline could not provide.

“The Commission concluded that the proposed acquisition would not raise competition concerns given the very limited overlaps between the parties’ activities and the presence of several strong alternative players that would remain active after the merger,” the EU executive said in a statement.

The deal, which was announced on October, will result in a one-off pre-tax charge of 240 million euros ($299 million) for Lufthansa. It will allow Lufthansa to reduce its annual IT costs by around 70 million euros a year.

Under the planned deal, Lufthansa will outsource all its IT infrastructure services to IBM under a seven-year deal and the U.S. firm will take over the airline’s IT infrastructure division, currently part of Lufthansa Systems.

The transaction was examined by the European Commission under the normal merger review procedure.

Source:https://www.yahoo.com/tech/s/eu-clears-lufthansa-outsourcing-deal-ibm-115505779–finance.html

Indian IT companies lag behind global peers in SaaS space

December 12th, 2014

The rise of software-as-a-service cloud delivery model poses a threat to the dominance of the homegrown software exporters as most of them lag behind the foreign companies, including IBM and Accenture in offering services to customers.Outsourcing12

Although significant investments are currently being made by Infosys and Wipro in strengthening their cloud offerings, some of the fastest growing SaaS firms globally do not even name any of the country’s largest IT firms as their strategic partners.

“We’ve got strong partnerships with Deloitte and Accenture and IBM and increasingly, PWC and KPMG, Towers Watson and Aon Hewitt,” said Aneel Bhusri, co-founder and co-CEO of Workday, in an analyst call last month, underlining the fact none of the Indian tech giants made the list.

For now, Indian companies are catching up with the foreign IT firms, as Wipro entered into a partnership with Workday in 2011, three years after Accenture first became Workday’s global deployment partner.

“We are there but we may not be matching them (IBM, Accenture)…It requires a lot of investments. They are ahead of us,” said Satishchandra Doreswamy, chief business operations officer at Wipro. “(But) we are also picking up…we are currently building cloud business platforms.”

Software-as-a-service, in which companies pay for software based on their usage, is expected to top $22 billion through 2015, up from about $14 billion in 2012, according to research firm Gartner.

The impact of this is most visible in Indian tech giants losing out to global software exporters when it comes to migrating existing infrastructure to cloud model. One of the examples is when IBM won a 10-year, multi-billion dollar deal to provide computer infrastructure services to Dutch bank ABN Amro running on its cloud systems. As in most deals, the biggest names, including Infosys and Wipro were in the race to bag this contract.

Another wrinkle for Indian tech majors is the inability to offer IPs in cloud space which can help them bag large contracts when competing for large deals.

“We have acquired industry leading cloud intellectual properties (IPs) which help us provide our customers with a strong orchestration layer to manage diverse cloud platforms in a seamless manner,” claims Anand Sankaran, president, Infrastructure and cloud computing at privately-held Dell services.

For this reason, some analysts believe cloud could pose a long-term challenge, capping upside potential in a sector growing at 13-14% annually.

“In the long run (5-10 years), we think cloud will eat into the enterprise application services (EAS) revenues of India’s IT services companies (15-20% of total), assuming ‘ERP on cloud’ becomes a reality,” Yogesh Aggarwal, an analyst with HSBC Securities said in a report dated November 25. “In the near term, the risk is more manageable at just 5-6% of total business, as cloud companies have achieved little in terms of operating metrics.”

To be sure, some of that impact is already showing. The time-and-material model of payment, where companies pay for the effort rather than the outcome, has been dropping steadily over the past few years.

“Clients are asking for a significant sub set of the existing work to be converted into a pay for use model. This will pose significant challenges to the Indian based providers which currently utilize an FTE base model,” said Peter Bendor Samuel, CEO of outsourcing advisory firm Everest. “Its impacts are already showing in the slowing growth and the increased need for investment.”

A senior executive of Infosys acknowledges the company’s limitations, with lack of certified consultants who can help customers to move to cloud space.According to the HSBC Securities report, Accenture leads the pack among IT outsourcers, with about 3100 certified Workday consultants. Additionally, the outsourcer also has 1800 Salesforce-certified consultants. In comparison, top five Indian IT firms collectively have a little more than 2,000 Salesforce certified professionals.

Still all is not lost as some believe a recognition by the leading IT firms to increase their investment can help them battle again the likes of Accenture when it comes to winning large deals.

“The two things that they need to do is to build these strategic alliances with companies that have cloud-based products and second is to have hosting either in their own data centres in geographies where they want to provide these services or they should have tie-ups with data centres in those regions,” said Biswajeet Mahapatra, research director at Gartner.

To combat the long-term threat, companies will also have to change how their services are delivered as the lowered complexity of cloud-based solutions will reduce the need to employ armies of engineers.

“Companies will have to invest in robotic process automation, artificial intelligence, analytics tools and capabilities, business process skills, consulting talent. They will need to change the revenue model from one driven by selling just labour to one selling products and expertise weaved into those services,” Phil Fersht, CEO of advisory firm HfS Research, said.

Source:http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/tech/it-services/Indian-IT-companies-lag-behind-global-peers-in-SaaS-space/articleshow/45491781.cms

IBM bags multi-billion dollar outsourcing deal with ABN AMRO

December 2nd, 2014

IBM has bagged a multi-billion dollar 10-year deal with Dutch bank ABN AMRO, the second major European outsourcing win for the company in the last month.Outsourcing10

The deal is likely to bring cheer to Big Blue, following its recent “disappointing” third-quarter results.

The deal includes a private IBM cloud, mobile computing, managed services for mainframe, servers, storage, end-user computing, and support. IBM did not disclose the full details.

Piet Bil, IBM managing director for ABN AMRO, said the deal is intended to help the business become a digital bank.

In November IBM signed a seven-year €1bn (£800m) contract with Lufthansa to integrate mobile, social and analytics across the airline.

In its last quarter results posted in October, revenue fell across the company’s divisions, dropping six per cent to $22.4bn.

IBM chief executive Ginny Rometty said the company was disappointed in its performance and blamed a “marked slowdown in September in client buying behavior.”

Hardware fell most dramatically, down 15 per cent to $2.4bn. The company’s global services outsourcing division fared slightly better, down three per cent to $13.7bn.

Big Blue was asked if the results would prompt it to follow HP’s lead and split the business up. IBM said it was already divesting under-performing businesses such as the microelectronics unit, which is being passed over to Global Foundries.

Source:http://www.theregister.co.uk/2014/12/01/ibm_bags_multibillion_dollar_outsourcing_deal_with_abn_amro/

IBM launches new email service Verse

November 19th, 2014

International Business Machine Corp has launched a new e-mail application for businesses that integrates social media, file sharing and analytics to learn a user’s behavior and predict interactions with coworkers. Outsourcing3

The application is part of IBM’s attempt to shift its focus to cloud computing and data analytics from the hardware services that had long been the company’s bread and butter.

The new e-mail service, known as IBM Verse, includes a built-in personal assistant that can learn from a user’s behavior and draft responses to e-mails based on similar previous interactions.

It also allows users to transform e-mail content into threads for blogs and social media, view the relationships between different employees in an e-mail, mute a chain and search through attachments.

The e-mail’ s interface pins a user’s most frequent contacts, schedule and lists of assignments to a dashboard for easy access.

“We came at this from the perspective that this is about changing the game, not just incremental improvements in e-mail,” Jeff Schick, IBM’s general manager of social solutions, told Reuters.

IBM’s enterprise mail service, known as Notes, is used by 25,000 companies worldwide and more than 50,000 use IBM’s social platform for businesses, IBM Connections. The company hopes IBM Verse will eventually replace Window’s popular Outlook.

The free initial model will include limited mailbox sizes and file sharing. A paid version with additional features and data allowance will be available in January 2015.

IBM is not the only company trying to give e-mail a makeover. In October, Google Inc launched an e-mail service called “Inbox” that will better organize e-mails and display information such as appointments, flight bookings and package deliveries in a more user-friendly way.

But unlike Google, IBM Verse will not sell the data it gathers about users to advertisers, a selling point critical for businesses concerned about privacy and security.

The service is delivered through cloud computing and will be available in IBM’s Cloud Marketplace.

Source:http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/tech/tech-news/IBM-launches-new-email-service-Verse/articleshow/45199923.cms

Lufthansa signs $1.25 billion outsourcing deal with IBM

November 18th, 2014

IBM has won an outsourcing contract from Germany’s Lufthansa worth 1 billion euros ($1.25 billion) that will see the U.S. company take over the airline’s information technology infrastructure services division and staff.A German airline Lufthansa A380 Airbus aircraft flies over Frankfurt

The move is part of plans by Lufthansa to restructure and cut costs as it seeks to compete with fast-growing rivals in both Europe and the Gulf.

Under the seven-year deal, IBM said it will make the airline’s IT processes more efficient, such as moving it more toward cloud computing, saving Lufthansa around 70 million euros a year.

Around 1,400 Lufthansa Systems employees will transfer to IBM as part of the deal, which was first outlined in October.

The deal is subject to approval by antitrust authorities and the Lufthansa supervisory board.

Source:http://www.reuters.com/article/2014/11/18/us-lufthansa-ibm-outsourcing-idUSKCN0J20PV20141118

IBM takes on enterprise cloud security

November 6th, 2014

As organizations increasingly move their operations to the cloud, they need to remain vigilant against security breaches. IBM had this in mind as it prepared a new portfolio of services designed to help secure an enterprise’s cloud operations with the same rigor that has come to be expected with in-house operations.Outsourcing6

“The move to the cloud is nothing new, but what we’re seeing now is that people are now considering moving critical workloads to the cloud,” said Marc van Zadelhoff, IBM vice president of strategy for security systems.

The Dynamic Cloud Security portfolio, available now, “allows customers to take security to the cloud with them,” Zadelhoff said.

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The portfolio concentrates on aiding enterprises in three of areas of security: authenticating access in the cloud, protecting applications and data in the cloud, and improving visibility into the effectiveness of security controls watching over cloud resources.

Over 200 engineers helped build the portfolio over the past year. The services extend IBM’s collection of security software programs, such as QRadar security event management software and the Guardian data protection software, so they can be used to guard cloud resources as well.

Initially, the services will focus on securing resources on Amazon Web Services and IBM’s own SoftLayer cloud, though they can also be used with other cloud services as well, Zadelhoff said.

The portfolio includes a central portal that offers a summary of the state of security across all of an organization’s assets. Most security breaches can take weeks or even months to discover, IBM has estimated. The longer a breach goes undiscovered, the more damage an attacker can do. So a security portal can help identify problems as soon as they arise.

The IBM services can scan the applications being used in the cloud for potential vulnerabilities, and can alert developers or system administrators of any potential security weaknesses. They can identify sensitive data in the cloud, and then monitor that data for any unauthorized usage. Pricing is based on different services used, overall usage and other factors.

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IBM itself already collects more than 20 billion daily security events in the course of its duties managing security for clients. This intelligence allows IBM to identify threats early on.

IBM has identified security as a growth market for the company. It has acquired 12 security companies in the past decade, and has invested over $2 billion into security research, securing over 3,000 patents in this area.

In the field of cloud security, IBM will be competing against a wide variety of companies such as Symantec, Barracuda, Qualys, SafeNet, TrendMicro and WatchGuard — many of which have built up expertise in on-premise security products and services.

Source:http://www.computerworlduk.com/news/outsourcing/3584461/ibm-takes-on-enterprise-cloud-security/

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