This past week we exhibited at the Microsoft World Partner Conference (WPC) in Toronto. A recurring theme throughout the WPC was the direction of cloud technology, focusing on how partners and their customers can harness it effectively. During the keynote, Microsoft reported there have been 120,000 new Microsoft Azure subscriptions a month, and announced the launch of Windows Server 2016 and System Centre 2016, which will be available later this year. Azure has become an increasingly mature platform, which we and other channel partners have seen with an increased interest both in inbound inquires from clients and use cases. As Microsoft continues to pursue a strategy around integrated systems, we expect to see another Azure Stack technical preview to be issued later this year.
Client demand for cloud services are at an all time high, with businesses citing digital transformation as a key priority. An astounding 85 percent of the Fortune 500 use the Microsoft Cloud today. Additionally, cloud partners with more than 50 percent of revenue in the cloud are also growing twice as fast, earning $5.87 for every $1 in Microsoft cloud services sold.
“The valuation of cloud companies is much higher than those operating on-premise,” Microsoft General Manager of Small, Medium Business and Partners Asia Pacific, Valerie Beaulieu, said. “Depending on the company, we’re seeing valuations that are 5x higher than those transacting on-premise. Partners should think about profitability and the value of cloud on their own business.”
In Microsoft’s new Channel Chief Gavriella Schuster’s Official Microsoft blog post on this year’s WPC, she emphasized that Microsoft aims to be both a technology partner and a business partner to companies going through digital transformation. She added, “Our partners drive creative implementations of our technologies and build partnerships with each other to delivery complementary services that power new revenue streams. It’s incredible to watch our partners embrace digital transformation through Microsoft’s cloud by taking advantage of the scalability and flexibility combined with the power of intelligence and security.” Microsoft focused on how its cloud technologies can empower digital transformation, particularly with Azure’s hybrid capabilities and advanced data services.
As the cloud continues to drive valuations and revenue across industries, Microsoft will continue to innovate its offerings. On the horizon for integrated offerings will be Dynamics 365 coupled with Office 365. This integration will create a cloud service that connects Dynamics 365’s current customer relationship management and ERP offerings with Office 365 and the unstructured data associated with collaboration and productivity software.
Also announced at the conference was the general availability of Azure SQL Data Warehouse, designed to deliver cloud elasticity to data warehousing. Benefits of this offering include the provisioning of a data warehouse in 3-5 minutes and ability to scale in seconds to meet demand. Additionally, the SQL-based view will be able to unlock intelligence for all data, whether structured, unstructured, on-premises or in the cloud using tools like Power BI and Microsoft Excel. This offering will also have auditing and threat detection built in that uses machine learning to understand workload patterns and serve as an advanced alarm system against potential breaches.
Datapipe has a deep history with Microsoft, joining Microsoft’s Cloud Solution Provider Program in 2015. As one of the first managed service providers to offer Managed Cloud for Azure and the launch of our newest service earlier this year, Datapipe Managed Cloud for Office 365, we are constantly striving to add value for our clients. In fact, one such case is a Datapipe client, Gateway Ticketing, whose Datapipe managed Azure deployment was featured at the WPC showcase entitled “Cloud and Enterprise Partner Stories.”
This year’s WPC was full of opportunity to collaborate and learn, while coming together to drive Microsoft’s partner ecosystem forward. To familiarize yourself with all of this year’s happenings at WPC, you can check out these Official Microsoft Blog recaps: