Alibaba Cloud signs SaaS alliance with Accenture

Carol Ko
Computerworld Hong Kong

Alibaba Cloud and Accenture have inked a collaboration agreement to provide "as-a-Service" technology and business solutions to customers in mainland China and in South East Asian markets.

At the annual Computing Conference held in Shenzhen last week, Alibaba Cloud's President Hu Xiaoming announced that the company will combine its infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) solutions with Accenture's industry and technology consulting capabilities to help enterprises run their digital businesses.

Through this collaboration, Alibaba Cloud and Accenture will jointly deliver third-party cloud-based solutions via the Alibaba Cloud platform. The two companies will also co-develop solutions based on their industry-specific solutions, and to align their go-to-market strategies.

"Accenture will provide consultancy services on digital business transformation, while Alibaba Cloud will focus on deep technology integration on the cloud platform and other technologies," said Yu Yi (pictured, left), managing director, Accenture Digital Lead, Greater China.

China, SE Asia as pilot areas

Commenting on why Alibaba Cloud choose to focus on the SE Asia market besides China, Yu Sicheng (pictured, right), vice president of Alibaba Cloud, said, "For the SE Asia market, Accenture already as very good solutions to offer, with a large team there and a local customer base. And from our perspective, Alibaba Cloud has gained huge acceptance in Asia, especially in SE Asia."

In August 2015, in an effort to expand its overseas market to SE Asia, Alibaba Cloud set up a data center in Singapore, built a local team there, and selected Singapore as their headquarter for SE Asia.

Last May, Alibaba Cloud announced to deliver its Aliyun and third party cloud services from a Towngas Telecom's data center in Tseung Kwan O. How will Hong Kong fit in in the new Alibaba Cloud-Accenture partnership?

"Hong Kong is a natural extension of mainland China. We have already set up data center presence in Hong Kong, so it is definitely a market that we will get into," said Yu. "We are very open in terms of our partnership with Accenture. Our joint cloud services delivery with Accenture to serve China and the SE Asian countries will apply to Hong Kong as well."

Finally, on the issue of data location, Yu said that customers' data will reside in whichever data center they choose. "If choose [to deploy] the Singapore data center, then their data will stay there as well."

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