US technology giant Cisco has set aside over $1 billion for building a string of data centers and offering cloud services through a dozen partners across the world.
The San Jose, California-based company is talking of building a network of clouds, known as a ‘Global InterCloud.’ The announcement underlines Cisco’s desire to diversify from networking hardware to renting computing services, thus rivaling the likes of Amazon Web Services, IBM and HP.
Cisco’s cloud service will be delivered through a dozen partners including Canada’s Allstream, Australian telecom service provider Telstra, tech distributor Ingram Micro Inc, Indian IT company Wipro, European cloud company Canopy and MicroStrategy, Inc.
The first-of-its-kind open Intercloud, which will feature APIs for rapid application development, will deliver a new enterprise-class portfolio of cloud IT services for businesses, service providers and re-sellers.
“Customers, providers and channel partners … want to rapidly deploy valuable enterprise-class cloud experiences for key customers — all while mitigating the risk of capital investment,” said Rob Lloyd, Cisco’s president of development and sales, in a statement.
Across the globe, enterprises are decreasing spending on hardware and are increasingly migrating to cloud computing. The networked connection of people, data, processes and things, dubbed the Internet of Everything, is going to become a $19 trillion economic opportunity in the coming decade.
Cisco says it will improve application security, compliance, auditing and mobility by using ACI’s centralized, programmable security policy.
Analysts say the network of partners forms the core part of Cisco’s cloud strategy. Customers can sign up with different partners depending on the region they operate. Working with a network of partners that already have a presence in those countries will help Cisco expand quickly.