IBM to manage Vodafone’s cloud and hosting systems in $550m deal

Companies announce a joint venture which will also see them creating new solutions

IBM and Vodafone has announced a new joint venture which will see the former managing the telco's cloud and hosting systems in an eight-year deal valued at $550 million (€480 million).

The companies, which have collaborated on a number of projects over the past twenty years, said the new venture would also focus on creating new digital solutions.

Vodafone said the agreement would help speed up the adoption of cloud technologies and new business applications.

"Vodafone has successfully established its cloud business to help our customers succeed in a digital world," said chief executive Nick Read.

“This strategic venture with IBM allows us to focus on our strengths in fixed and mobile technologies, whilst leveraging IBM’s expertise in multicloud, artificial intelligence (AI) and services. Through this new venture we’ll accelerate our growth and deepen engagement with our customers while driving radical simplification and efficiency in our business,” he added.

Roy Illsley, an analyst at research group Ovum, said the cloud market needs ventures such as that announced by the two companies.

“IBM and Vodafone are getting ahead of the game and by coming together are striving to make it easier for businesses to use any cloud, any data, any workload in any location - this could open up huge possibilities for the enterprise,” he said.