Cloud Computing

Enterprise Cloud Computing: T-Systems to launch “Enterprise Marketplace”

According to Deutsche Telekom it already could reach about 10.000 mid-size business for its Business Marketplace. Now a similar success should be achieved in the corporate customer environment. For this the Enterprise Marketplace is available to purchase software, hardware or packaged solutions on demand and even deploy firm-specific in-house development for the own employees.

SaaS, IaaS and ready packages

The Enterprise Marketplace is aimed to the specific requirements of large business and offers besides Software-as-a-Service solutions (SaaS) also pre-configured images (appliances) and pre-configured overall packages which can be integrated into existing system landscapes. All services including integrated in-house developments are located in a hosted private cloud and are delivered through the backbone of the Telekom.

Standard solutions and in-house development

The Enterprise Marketplace offers mostly standardized services. The usage of these services includes new releases, updates and patches. The accounting is on a monthly base and based on the use of the respective service. T-Systems also provides ready appliances like a pre-configured Apache Application Server which can be managed and expanded with own software. In the future customers will be able to choose which T-Systems data center they would like to use.

Within the Enterprise Marketplace different offerings from the marketplace can be combined e.g. a webserver with a database and a content management system. Furthermore own solutions like monitoring tools can be integrated. These own solutions can also be provided to the remaining marketplace participants. Who and how many participants get access to the solution the customer decides on its own.

In addition the performance of each appliance in the Enterprise Marketplace can be individually customized. Therefore the user can affect the amount of CPUs as well as the RAM size and storage and the connection bandwidth. In a next expansion stage managed services take care of patches, updates and new releases.

Marketplace with solutions from external vendors

A custom dashboard provides an overview of all deployed or approved applications within the Enterprise Marketplace. Current solutions on the marketplace include webserver (e.g. Apache and Microsoft IIS), application server (e.g. Tomcat and JBoss), SQL databases, Microsoft Enterprise Search as well as open source packages (e.g. LAMP stack or Joomla). In addition T-Systems partners with a number of SaaS solution provider who have been specifically tested for use on the T-Systems infrastructure. This includes among others the tax software TAXOR, the enterprise social media solution tibbr, the business process management suite T-Systems Process Cloud as well as the sustainability management WeSustain.

Cloud computing at enterprise level

T-Systems with its Enterprise Marketplace already arrived where other providers like Amazon, Microsoft, Google, HP and Rackspace starts its journey – at the lucrative corporate customers. While the Business Marketplace primarily presents as a marketplace for SaaS solutions, T-Systems and the Enterprise Marketplace go ahead and also provide infrastructure ressources and complete solutions for companies including the integration of in-house development as well as managed services.

Compared to the current cloud players T-Systems does not operate a public cloud but instead focused on providing a (hosted/ virtual) private cloud. This can pay off in the medium term. Current market figures from IDC promise a growth for the public cloud by 2013 with 47.3 billion dollars to 107 billion dollars in 2017. According to IDC the popularity of the private cloud will decline for the benefit of the virtual private cloud (hosted private cloud) once the public cloud provider start to offer appropriate solutions to meet the concerns of the customers.

Similar observations we have made ​​during our GigaOM study “The state of Europe’s homegrown cloud market“. Cloud customers are increasingly demanding managed services. Although they want to benefit from the properties of the public cloud – flexible use of the resources, pay per use – but this at the same time within a very secure environment including the support for the integration of applications and systems by the provider. At present, all of this the public cloud player cannot offer in this form since they mainly focus on their self-service offerings. This is fine, because they effectively operate certain use cases and have achieved significant market share in a specific target customer segment. However, if they want to get the big fish in the enterprise segment, they will have to align their strategy to the T-Systems portfolio in order to meet the individual needs of the customers.

A note on the selection process of partners for the Enterprise Marketplace: Discussions with partners that offer their solutions on the Business Marketplace confirm a tough selection process, which can be a real “agony” for the partner. Specific adjustments specifically to the security infrastructure of T-Systems are not individual cases and show a high quality management by T-Systems.

By Rene Buest

Rene Buest is Gartner Analyst covering Infrastructure Services & Digital Operations. Prior to that he was Director of Technology Research at Arago, Senior Analyst and Cloud Practice Lead at Crisp Research, Principal Analyst at New Age Disruption and member of the worldwide Gigaom Research Analyst Network. Rene is considered as top cloud computing analyst in Germany and one of the worldwide top analysts in this area. In addition, he is one of the world’s top cloud computing influencers and belongs to the top 100 cloud computing experts on Twitter and Google+. Since the mid-90s he is focused on the strategic use of information technology in businesses and the IT impact on our society as well as disruptive technologies.

Rene Buest is the author of numerous professional technology articles. He regularly writes for well-known IT publications like Computerwoche, CIO Magazin, LANline as well as and is cited in German and international media – including New York Times, Forbes Magazin, Handelsblatt, Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, Wirtschaftswoche, Computerwoche, CIO, Manager Magazin and Harvard Business Manager. Furthermore Rene Buest is speaker and participant of experts rounds. He is founder of and writes about cloud computing, IT infrastructure, technologies, management and strategies. He holds a diploma in computer engineering from the Hochschule Bremen (Dipl.-Informatiker (FH)) as well as a M.Sc. in IT-Management and Information Systems from the FHDW Paderborn.