Telstra’s Jim Clarke on managing cloud strategy in Asia
Mon 10 Nov 2014
Jim Clarke is the Director for Marketing, Products & Pricing (International) for the Global Enterprise & Services division. He is responsible for leading Telstra’s global portfolio of products and associated pricing strategy, and driving the company’s international marketing activity.
In light of recent security breaches are Telstra customers at risk from migrating to the cloud through this service?
We take the security of our customer’s data very seriously, and as such the new Cisco partnered, OpenStack based cloud infrastructure platform is protected by high security standards. Cisco also takes extensive steps to protect its entire infrastructure from threats and therefore our customers can be reassured that both parties in this partnership are making security a priority.
What is Telstra’s view on the ‘hybrid’ cloud?
As the various types of cloud model continue to gain momentum, companies need to align the model they choose with their business goals. Often, there won’t be any fixed approach, or a one-size-fits-all method, when it comes to deciding which cloud strategy works best.
Cloud is a rapidly changing technology, which implies hybrid clouds can go out of fashion as quickly they come. The key to succeeding will be to keep a lean and flexible approach to cloud strategies to ensure adaptability to changing trends. Through a consistent approach to technology, service and application performance, Telstra’s customers can seamlessly deploy applications and deliver business processes across multiple geographic locations, which are backed up by leading service level agreements.
What does your Intercloud partnership with Cisco involve?
This partnership sees the expansion of Telstra’s Cloud infrastructure business, bringing global scale, global innovation and standards while continuing to provide best in class managed infrastructure. It brings two industry leaders to work together to provide an industry standardised and secure cloud environment allowing for the rapid deployment of cloud services. Under the first phase Cisco built and will manage the Cisco Cloud Services node inside Telstra’s Australian data centres. Additionally, last month we announced that Telstra and Cisco will deploy additional nodes in Hong Kong and Singapore. These nodes will become part of a global network of clouds operated by Cisco with other service provider partners.
What does this mean for customers in Asia, particularly Singapore and Hong Kong?
This recent extension of the Cisco partnership means our customers will be able to gain access to the Cisco platform in Singapore and Hong Kong. From these nodes, Telstra will offer services to and from global locations providing customers in the region with the same world class cloud capabilities we have in Australia. This world-first partnership with Cisco offers depth and breadth of service capabilities to make the journey to hybrid and public clouds simple and predictable for organisations. We’re expanding our Cloud Services portfolio to provide converged infrastructure as a private cloud solution that customers can locate in their existing data centre or in a Telstra co-location facility.
Will you be looking to select other partners?
Telstra aims to continue to lead the market with strategic partnerships that can provide our customers with next generation technology connected by our network. We will execute our cloud strategy both domestically and globally and will partner with the providers of best in class cloud infrastructures, which enable us to do this.
In your opinion, what are the thriving markets for cloud?
Asia is still emerging and there are some strong pockets of cloud capability – in places like Hong Kong, Singapore and Australia. There are also emerging markets within Asia; places like Malaysia, Thailand, and Vietnam where there is a huge opportunity to offer a consistent service in every location and to fill in some of the blanks that currently exist in terms of capability. Driven by the economic situation in Asia what we’re seeing is a lot of European and US customers moving into the region. What we’re doing is helping them make that journey, understanding the local nuances and delivering the infrastructure into Asia.
What opportunities does cloud offer emerging markets?
Asia Pacific is a great place to start when we look at growth markets. A lot of the markets are growing at a rapid pace and the challenge is where do you invest, where do you place your bets? Historically companies needed to invest for the long term but with cloud you can be much more agile, play more risk, look at the opportunities a market may bring and ride the wave of growth. Our customers can benefit from our intuitive cloud management console and with the click of a mouse access real-time reporting, or quickly add or remove capacity to meet their changing business needs.
What is Telstra’s overall strategy for Asia?
We have been active in Asia for many decades and we are looking for opportunities to build long term growth businesses and partnerships in the region. We are primarily focused on where we can add value – we are a strong, high-quality provider of network-centric enterprise services to multinational companies and large enterprises in Asia.
Within Asia, Telstra has the flexibility, agility and expertise to serve customers operating in the region as well as businesses from Europe, the Americas and other global companies looking to expand into Asia. Other long-term opportunities are in our global applications and platform business, which looks at new and emerging technologies and the ways in which Telstra can commercialise those opportunities in the future.