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Categories: AWS Azure HPE Lenovo Microsoft

POST WRITTEN BY  Rhett Dillingham Rhett Dillingham is a Moor Insights & Strategy senior analyst for cloud computing #Microsoft s Inspire conference announcements included two significant items related to its #Azurecloud computing business. The biggest was the announcement that the Azure Stack offering for private deployment is now ready for order from OEM launch partners #DellEMC, #HewlettPackardEnterprise and #Lenovo. The second was a $250M sales and marketing investment in broadening a Microsoft Azure co-sell program for its cloud partners that was piloted last year. To understand why these announcements could be impactful, it’s worth reviewing Azure’s market position and the biggest strategic levers Microsoft has to improve it. Azure has eo kmerged strongly over the past few years from a crowded field of entrants chasing market leader Amazon AWS and has taken a clear #2 position in revenue share of the IaaS + PaaS space. Azure’s year-on-year growth rate was 93% in the quarter ended in March, though it is growth on a revenue base I estimate to be still just 25-35% the size of AWS’s greater than $14 billion annual run-rate (based on Gartner’s estimate and Synergy Research Group’s Q1 revenue share data). In a space where there are clear customer community and partner ecosystem network effects typical of a technology platform competition, Microsoft wants to close the market share gap on AWS quickly, as time plays heavily in favor of the market leader.

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