Inspire 2018 day 2: Two platforms, many opportunities for partners

Categories: Cloud Infrastructure Events & Conferences Productivity
Tags: Microsoft 365 Microsoft Azure Microsoft Inspire
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Day two of Inspire 2018 sees Microsoft detail how partners can build profitable practices on Microsoft Azure and Microsoft 365

At Microsoft Build earlier this year, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella announced the company was focused on two massive platform opportunities moving forward: Microsoft Azure and Microsoft 365.

This message was again driven home today at day two of Microsoft Inspire 2018 in Las Vegas as Microsoft detailed the partner opportunity around both platforms.

“Both of these platform opportunities are being shaped by one major shift in the technology paradigm, and that’s the move to the the Intelligent Cloud and the Intelligent Edge,” said Jason Zander, vice president of the Microsoft Azure business. The core of this vision, he said, is Microsoft Azure.

Microsoft Azure

Zander noted two things that should be of particular interest to partners: Azure has the fastest growth of all cloud platforms – it demonstrated 100 percent year-on-year consumed revenue growth and 122 percent Azure Premium services growth – and that for every $1 Azure consumption drives $5 of partner business.

In terms of partner opportunity, Zander cited enterprise application software provider SAP’s workloads running on Azure, which has seen a 635 percent year-on-year growth in customer wins – 64 percent of which were struck with partners.

For every dollar of SAP earned on Azure, he said, partners make 2X on infrastructure services and 7X on transformation services.

He also highlighted the flexibility of the CSP programme in allowing partners to set the price, terms, and direct billing relationship with the customer, as well as provisioning, owning and managing subscriptions, meaning “there is nothing between you and your customer.”

Microsoft 365

Microsoft 365 Opportunity

Microsoft 365 has caught fire, said Ron, Markezich, corporate vice president for Microsoft 365 Commercial, growing at triple-digit seats over the past 12 months thanks to partners.

He said that partners that have built Microsoft 365 practices have achieved “the hat trick” of higher revenues, higher margins and higher customer satisfaction.

To align with Inspire 2018, Microsoft commissioned a study by Forrester into the total economic impact of Microsoft 265 Business.

Surveying partners serving the SMB marketplace, the report found “Most of these partners are experiencing sizeable upticks in the number of leads and opportunities they are receiving from the SMB space as a result of their Microsoft 365 Business solutions and go-to-market programmes.

“Our study finds that Microsoft partners with clever go-to-market approaches and repeatable IP that streamline the activation and adoption of Microsoft 365 Business workloads within the SMB space are poised to capitalise on this whitespace business opportunity, generating strong growth in coming years.”

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