Alibaba betting big on Indian cloud market

Our Bureau Mumbai | Updated on January 12, 2018 Published on June 10, 2017


Chinese e-comm giant to set up cloud data centre in Mumbai

Alibaba may not enter the e-commerce segment in India directly any time soon, but it is all set to expand its footprint in the country, offering its cloud computing services.

On Saturday, the company announced that Alibaba Cloud, its cloud computing arm, will set up its first cloud data centre in Mumbai.

This, together with the recently announced data centre in Malaysia, will significantly increase Alibaba’s computing resources in Asia, targeting small and medium enterprises (SMEs) throughout the region.

“I believe Alibaba Cloud, as the only global cloud services provider originating from Asia, is uniquely positioned with cultural and contextual advantages to provide innovative data intelligence and computing capabilities to customers in this region.

“Establishing data centres in India and Indonesia will further strengthen our position in the region and across the globe,” said Simon Hu, Senior Vice-President of Alibaba Group and President of Alibaba Cloud.

Enterprise focus

However, Aliababa is not targeting only SMEs, a community which it also serves through its e-commerce platform in China.

The focus in India would also be on enterprises and possibly the government.

For this, at the company’s Cloud Computing Conference in Shanghai, Tata Communications and Alibaba announced their partnership to enable customers from over 150 countries, including India, to connect to Alibaba Cloud’s ExpressConnect via Tata Communications’ IZO Private Connect service.

“We look forward to working closely with Tata Communications in a bid to provide an exciting proposition with great connectivity for global enterprises wanting to enter China and for Chinese enterprises looking to go global with ease and convenience,” said Yeming Wang, Deputy General Manager of Alibaba Cloud Global.

The public cloud services market in India is projected to grow 38 per cent in 2017 to $1.81 billion, according to Gartner. In India, the space is currently dominated by Amazon Web Services, Microsoft Azure, Google and IBM. All these players have launched their data centres in India over the past two years in a bid to tap into the rapidly growing market here and to leverage the Centre’s push towards cloud computing.

Having data centres in the country will allow these players to work with the Centre as well as banks since regulations restrict these organisations from storing sensitive data outside the country.

With the three new planned centres, Alibaba Cloud will increase its total number of data centre locations to 17, covering mainland China, Australia, Germany, Japan, Hong Kong, Singapore, the UAE and the US.

Published on June 10, 2017
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