Published on the 14/02/2017 | Written by Donovan Jackson
Oracle expands cloud coverage with PaaS, IaaS…
Without naming numbers, the big red vendor has made what it describes as ‘significant investments’ to expand the cloud services it has on offer on both sides of the Tasman. In addition to its SaaS offerings across finance, HR and marketing, it has added its PaaS and IaaS services, focused initially around data management, application development and integration, as well as compute and storage.
Telsyte’s Australian Infrastructure & Cloud Computing Market Study 2017 found the Australian IaaS market is set to grow from $621m in 2016 to reach $1.049 billion by 2020.
In a chat with iStart, Rob Willis, recently appointed Oracle ANZ regional MD said the company’s expanded cloud puts it into a unique position, thanks to combination of platform, infrastructure and SaaS components. “At a macro level, the market is asking for ‘cloud economics’ [and that means] more flexibility and agility and the ability to do things more quickly and in a less expensive way,” he said. “That’s coming from all segments of customers, it isn’t tied to verticals or geographies.”
With big companies, said Willis, there are attendant issues such as data sovereignty and regulatory issues which have served as something of a handbrake on cloud ambitions. “These businesses are looking to augment existing capacity with public cloud or cloud on their premises; that’s what our ‘cloud at customer’ addresses. We can add and deliver public cloud, and take that on their premises behind their firewall.”
That’s on the one hand. On the other, Willis said another segment is smaller customers looking to transform their businesses or ‘do the next great thing’. “They are looking for infrastructure services, sure, but they also need platform services, like mobile, or BI analytics; they need these services to do actually do something with the infrastructure they can now readily access in the cloud.”
Or, as Oracle ANZ cloud maestro Chris Chelliah backed it up: “It’s easy to spin up some new compute capacity, but what can you actually do with it?” Without the platform and applications, perhaps not much more than impress your (geeky) friends.
Yes, agreed Willis, digital transformation is to an extent behind market demand. “It is one of the drivers, but it is also one of those phrases which means different things to different customers. Sometimes it’s nothing more than a desire to focus on the things that you’re good at,” he said.
Or, another example of the IT industry behaving like a man with a hammer, to whom everything looks like a nail. “Well,” laughed Willis, “At Oracle, we have some great hammers.”
Asked if the expanded cloud services are likely to appeal primarily to those already committed to the Oracle stack, Chelliah said this was the case. “They will be among the first to look and see how this helps achieve their goals. But we also see evidence of those which aren’t big Oracle customers seeing the benefits, and doing more. Initially, yes, it will be existing clients, then over time, we expect to see others which may not see Oracle as first port of call recognising the value.”
With the cloud market well-traded by the likes of AWS and Microsoft Azure, we wanted to know if Oracle intends to grow the market or claw share away from competitors. It will be a bit of both, said Willis. “We love a bit of clawing,” he quipped, “But I have to say that clearly the market has been strong and growing well over last few years.
“It is already large, but still in many ways, we are at the beginning of that growth. We will create new opportunities, but at the same time, we are not at all shying away from competition. That is great for customers and for us as we look to expand the total market with new services and capabilities.”