UK Cloud Alliance Paints Complete Cloud Picture

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This week will see the launch of the UK Cloud Alliance which, according to Grant Tanner, will offer a complete ‘sourcing pool’ for cloud services

A new consortium of UK-based companies has formed to provide medium-sized British firms with a ready-made “sourcing pool” of cloud specialist services and products.

Dubbed the UK Cloud Alliance, the consortium is led by founding member Star, which is itself an IT and communications service provider in the UK.

The idea behind the alliance is that it is a group of 17 cloud providers who have been screened and audited, so that medium sized businesses can quickly source local specialist support to help solve their most pressing cloud challenges.

Cloud Sourcing Pool

Companies that are seeking cloud expertise have traditionally had to deal with one service provider that acts as a ‘one-stop-shop’, but which in reality outsources specialist tasks and services to other third party companies.

The UK Cloud Alliance will offer potential cloud buyers more protection, as all members are pre-vetted and subject to due diligence, prior to joining the Alliance.

UK Cloud Alliance members are also not massive corporations that are solely focused on the high-end enterprise accounts, but are instead specifically aimed at mid-tier companies. Indeed, the UK Cloud Alliance prides itself on being able to offer a local cloud service provider for UK business.

Speaking to eWEEK Europe UK, Grant Tanner (pictured), the business development manager for Star and The UK Cloud Alliance, explained that the Alliance will initially address 13 “areas of specialisms” within the cloud sphere. These include infrastructure, telephony, security, IT support, hardware migration and virtualisation, all backed by a strict Code of Conduct, Service Level Agreements (SLAs) and other contractual terms.

“Star is a managed service provider and over the past 18 months we have seen our customer base asking for the transformal aspect of the Cloud,” said Tanner. “This often involves a degree of complexity, yet we are not an IBM or Accenture, so we were increasingly being asked to partner other organisations. This is what the CIOs were asking, so we decided to offer them a complete solution instead. We looked at 13 areas of specialisms or skills sets, and we filled that with 17 organisations, and that became the UK Cloud Alliance.”

“The UK Cloud Alliance is led by Star but no one member has overriding responsibility,” said Tanner.

The collection of the Alliance’s technology choices can be delivered via Star’s private cloud platform.

“The benefits for customers is that the UK Cloud Alliance becomes a sourcing pool, that provides better managed services from a pre-vetted organisation,” said Tanner. “This is not a trade committee but allows for savvy IT buyers to use it to get enable the cloud for their organisation. It has taken 18 months to get this Alliance to market.”

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