Thursday, December 5, 2013

IBM Refines its Cloud Consulting Practice

IBM is expanding its Cloud Consulting Services portfolio with customizable options and a number of fast-start industry solutions delivered as a service for cloud-based applications.

IBM said this new strategy contrasts with the current "one size fits all" approach that most cloud providers offer when migrating businesses onto the cloud.

The fast-start industry solutions, which are hosted on a private cloud using SoftLayer and offered as a managed service through IBM Global Business Services, are designed for rapid deployment, implementation and experimentation in vertical industries – such as banking, insurance, retail, telecom and energy and utilities.

One example is the IBM Insurance Service Hub Cloud – a communication platform on the cloud that connects health insurance companies with multiple data providers such as clinics and physicians, as well as customers via their mobile devices.  Managed and hosted by IBM, the Insurance Service Hub Cloud replaces the traditional bilateral paper-based data exchange with digital information delivered in one standardized interface.

"Delivering more personalized services to customers with greater speed is a significant priority for businesses today," said Sanjay Rishi, Managing Partner, IBM Cloud Consulting Services. "In the era of cloud, the agenda of front office decision makers places a premium on flexibility and the ability to experiment. With these new cloud offerings, IBM will help front office leaders rapidly deploy business content for business value."

IBM noted that since 2007 it has invested more than $6 billion in acquisitions to accelerate its cloud initiatives.

IBM to Acquire SoftLayer for Cloud Services

IBM agreed to acquire SoftLayer Technologies, which operates 13 data centers in the United States, Asia and Europe.  Financial terms were not disclosed. Bloomberg valued the deal at about $2 billion. SoftLayer allows clients to buy enterprise-class cloud services on dedicated or shared servers, offering clients a choice of where to deploy their applications. The company is based in Dallas, Texas, and serves approximately 21,000 customers....