Eircom signs cloud services deal with AWS
Eircom is teaming up with Amazon Web Services to offer cloud services to its Irish and UK-based customers, significantly increasing the range of products on offer to businesses.
Under the deal, Eircom will offer services built on the AWS platform but customised for its clients, allowing them to roll out new services and infrastructure on a pay-per-use basis. The model can be more cost-effective for businesses, offering them access to infrastructure and expertise that would require significant investment to have in-house.
“We will, through this proposition, be able to provide customers with a full platform within which to develop, test and manage all of their IT infrastructure within a secure environment, but on a pay-per-use model,” said managing director of Eircom Business Ronan Kneafsey.
“So they can avoid significant investments in capex – hardware, software – and also effectively outsource the management of that to a third party.”
Eircom’s addition to the AWS partner programme was announced at Amazon’s inaugural re:Invent conference in Las Vegas. The technology firm is making a push into IT services delivery.
Some customers are already using the new services, but Mr Kneafsey said the services would be fully available to the market early in the new year. Initially, the focus will be on larger organisations, including multinationals and public sector bodies, but Mr Kneafsey said the company hopes to offer the same services to small businesses later in 2013.
“We know that there is a lot of demand for these type of services in smaller businesses, because this type of proposition allows them to put in place very complex infrastructure in their business without big capital investment and without having to invest in specialised people,” he said.
Eircom already offers a range of cloud services to its customers, offering data centre services to cloud providers in Ireland, and private infrastructure as a service to other customers.
“What our relationship with Amazon allows us to do is to offer very significant structure as a service to our customers. That provides them with all the cost-effective benefits of that platform. It’s a hugely scaleable platform, and it provides our customers with a lot of flexibility to be able to move all their systems into the AWS platform,” he said.
“It’s also highly secure. It sits within the overall Eircom data network framework, so customers benefit from the fact that they are getting a world-class structure as a service platform. But it’s in a secure environment, which is one of the concerns customers have.”
Eircom is investing €1.5 billion in its infrastructure, across fixed and wireless services.
The company has strong growth ambitions, Mr Kneafsey said, noting that there was the opportunity to increase its business in the cloud area.
According to research firm IDC, Ireland’s cloud market is set to rise from €111 million in 2012 to €190 million in 2014.
“Our ambition is to secure a sizeable chunk of that market as it grows,” he said.
Eircom is planning to add further services over time, as the push towards the cloud and “pay as you use” model gathers momentum.