Posts tagged ‘sap’

European Commission, IT companies and telcos pump €2.5bn into big data initiatives #bigdata

Source: Business Cloud News

The European Commission and the Big Data Value Association have signed a memorandum of understanding that will see the Commission and private sector firms pump €2.5bn into a number of big data-focused initiatives between 2015 and 2020.

The EC said it will put up €500m from the Horizon 2020 fund to help create up to 100,000 new data-related jobs in Europe by 2020, and invest in businesses using data innovatively for energy efficiency optimisation, healthcare service improvement, and industrial machinery applications.

The Big Data Value Association, which represents ATOS, Nokia Solutions and Networks, Orange, SAP, SIEMENS, and several research bodies, and other members of the EC’s Data public private partnership (PPP) including IBM, SAP, Software AG and a number of other organisations, will pump at least another €2bn into the initiatives over the same period.

“Data is the motor and foundation of the future economy,” said EC vice president Neelie Kroes, who signed the MoU along with Big Data Value Association president Jan Sundelin.

“Every kind of organisation needs the building blocks to boost their performance, from farm to factory, from the lab to the shop floor,” Kroes said.

The EC and participating firms will also help create “innovation spaces” as part of the effort, which will offer secure environments for experimenting with private and publicly available data sets.

In October last year the European Council called on the Commission to support more initiatives aimed at helping European businesses compete more ably in the digital economy, as well as other broad related efforts in mobile and cloud computing.

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  •  Philips representing, Electronics: “Data-Driven Digital Innovation at Philips: a practical case study”
  • Last minute representing, Online Hospitality: “Translate big data to big marketing”
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  • Asda representing, Retail: “Looking at how big data has impacted the single customer view and how organisations can influence their retention strategy”
  • BBC representing, Media: “Engaging the user: “Television and the 5 P of user engagement”
  • National Grid representing, Utilities: “Building agility into Business Intelligence with federated thinking”

Visit: www.analyticsandbigdatacongress.com for more information!

Telefónica Group CIO: Using cloud to regain ground lost to OTT players #telcocloud

Source: Buisness Cloud News

With operations in 24 countries, over 120,000 employees globally, Telefónica Group, one of the largest telecommunications companies in the world, is looking to put at IT at the core of everything that it does in order to compete globally in an industry currently in the throes of a digital revolution. Phil Jordan, group chief information officer at Telefónica tells BCN that cloud is at the centre of how the company plans to regain terrain lost to over-the-top (OTT) players, make its core mobile and fixed line operations more flexible and scalable, and enable it to provide next generation digital services.

“IT is a strategic differentiator for the company, but it hasn’t always been perceived that way, even when I became CIO,” says Jordan, who took up his current role at Telefónica in 2011. Context, he says, is essential to understanding why this perception proliferated within the company and throughout the telecoms sector more broadly, and why the operator is currently spearheading so many new digital initiatives.

“We’re a business operating in an industry that failed to innovate fast enough, which has probably created the opportunity for the Vibers and the WhatsApps of the world, and I think we’ve failed to innovate in our own product because, like a lot of businesses, we felt we didn’t need to because we were making lots of money,” he explains. “You get complacent.”

The situation is cause for concern, not just at Telefónica but for most telcos, which could be losing up to $386bn cumulatively by 2018 to OTT players like Skype and WhatsApp according to research and consulting firm Ovum.

It is within this context that Telefónica has sought to become more digital, an effort complicated by its continued growth and a series of acquisitions. As one of the biggest and oldest telcos with lots of fixed line heritage, it has accumulated a very complex IT systems landscape over the years, which Jordan says the company is constantly trying to simplify.

“One of our big challenges as a federation of separate businesses is that we have to remove complexity. We’ve managed to overcomplicate the industry, our business, and our internal systems over the last 20 years,” he says.

But the biggest challenge, he explains, is inextricably linked to what Jordan believes is the biggest opportunity for the operator: data.

“We’ve always had a tremendous amount of data, we’ve always been a big data company, but how do you derive insights from the data? Because of systems fragmentation, we’ve struggled to derive real insight and particularly global insight through the use of data. Getting a 360 degree view of our customers is actually a much bigger challenge for us than working out how to leverage analytics and big data systems.”

Driving core platforms and systems change at Telefónica

Because of the way the industry grew, Jordan explains, the lack of recognition in how important IT was moving forward, “we’ve ended up with such fragmented systems that they don’t really lend themselves well to forming that 360 degree customer view. But that’s a problem because data is the new battleground and the future differentiator for our industry.”

“We’ve gone from having almost 7,000 systems three years ago, down to 4,200 now, so we’re slowly simplifying our estate.”

The company’s SaaS and virtualisation strategies are central to this process. Telefónica is a large user of Office 365, SAP SuccessFactors and Salesforce among other big name cloud services. It deploys these services from a private cloud platform hosted in its massive datacentre in Spain, which at a whopping 65,700 m2 is one of the largest in Europe, dwarfed only by Portugal Telecom’s recently announced Covilha datacentre.

By centralising these services the company is able to leverage its cloud platform and generate operational efficiencies through a shared services approach, while ensuring local standards and businesses processes can be maintained where necessary, and by purchasing commoditised solutions off-the-shelf the company has enjoyed significant cost benefits.

The operator has also virtualised a number of its internal platforms, which allows the company to sweat its existing assets and make its datacentre resources more scalable and flexible.

By the end of this year Jordan’s team will have virtualised about 40 per cent of the group’s IT servers, and the company is now taking this approach to the most mission-critical system of all – the core network, through network function virtualisation (NFV). Along with global CTO Enrique Blanco and his team the company is working on a proof of concept for a virtual radio access network (vRAN). Work on a virtual Evolved Packet Core, vIMS, vDNS and vDHCP is also set to conclude this year as the operator looks to virtualise 30 per cent of all new infrastructure by 2016.

Virtualising these system will allow Telefónica to deploy network assets in a way that allows them to be managed centrally and deployed globally, while making them more flexible, scalable and less expensive to acquire and maintain than legacy networking hardware.

The operator has taken a slightly different approach with its business support and operational support systems. Telefónica recognises the need to transform BSS and OSS in order to have these digital capabilities and a foundation for the future. But it’s not consolidating these systems or putting one BSS or OSS across the group because it’s just not practical or doable across many group companies, Jordan explains.

“We are doing greenfield BSS implementations in 14 separate countries at the moment, so we’ve accelerated beyond belief in pace and the urgency, and these are with the same standard processes and architecture, using three different vendors, heavily based on standards and reused on processes. So core BSS and OSS processes reused country to country, in clusters of the same technology.”

The company’s multimillion dollar investment into its global BSS overhaul has as much to do with eliminating data systems fragmentation and simplifying the back-end of the services it offers as much as driving digital engagement with customers and readying itself for the company’s future, which Jordan says increasingly sees digital services at its core.

“We must become more digital in our interactions with our customers. The new generation of Telefónica customers don’t engage with us in the way they used to. Online is an important channel for us but a ‘digital only’ channel experience needs to be created in all the countries we operate in.”

But Jordan says this is part of a broader strategy to drive digital services – particularly platform-based services – within Telefónica, and as a key component of its market offerings.

“I don’t think we’ll ever be able to innovate as fast as the model that now exists around the internet and around the digital world, so adopting an open platform that innovators and entrepreneurs want to base their applications and their services on, and provide capabilities to innovate with, is central to where we want to go, and becoming a platform business, offering platform as a service, is a key element to our future.”

View the full article here!

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Capgemini opens SMAC innovation lab in Melbourne #cloudasia

Outsourcing and systems integration firm Capgemini has opened a digital innovation lab in Melbourne, Australia focused on developing innovations in and helping clients implement social, mobile, analytics and cloud (SMAC) technologies. The move comes as IBM and SAP bolster operations in what seems to be emerging as a key tech hub in the region.

Capgemini, which already has a strong presence in Australia with over 2,000 employees, said the multi-million dollar SMAC lab will be co-located with its new Global Delivery Centre, and will innovate around, and offer offer support to existing and potential customers implementing, social media, mobile, analytics and cloud computing technologies in their businesses.

“Melbourne has one of the largest research and development clusters in the southern hemisphere and spends more than any other Australian city,” said Deepak Nangia, chief executive officer for Capgemini Australia and New Zealand.

“Simply put, Melbourne is a prime place for investment – it has the ICT skills, infrastructure and capabilities we needed to open our SMAC lab. Today’s announcement reinforces our ongoing commitment to the local ICT market and building tomorrow’s talent.”

The move comes as other enterprise IT incumbents look to make a splash in the booming Australian cloud services market.

SAP this week opened a new $60m Innovation Centre and a Mission Control Centre in Melbourne, which will focus on helping organisations move to cloud deployment models and provide service support to local businesses and customers.

IBM also bolstered its Australian operations as of late, announcing this week that the company is building out a SoftLayer datacentre in Melbourne, which is scheduled to go live next month and offer the full portfolio of SoftLayer cloud services to customers in Australia and New Zealand.

According to Gartner, Australia is looking set to become one of the highest growth markets for cloud services in the Asia Pacific region. The research and analysis firm predicts spending on cloud services will grow at 23.08 per cent annually to reach $5.2bn in 2016, up from $3.2bn last year.

Source: Buissness Cloud News

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Introducing SMAC

Achieving Business & IT Agility through Advanced SMAC Technologies: Social Media, Mobility, Analytics & Cloud

This year’s opening plenary and 3 dedicated streams in Enterprise ensure the opportunities and challenges surrounding the 3rd Platform’ Technologies: Social, Mobility, Analytics and Cloud are comprehensively covered!

Achieving true enterprise mobility is about more than deploying cloud computing. Cloud is the powerful platform needed to achieve business and IT agility, however cross device enterprise application management, integration of communication and social media, as well as data analytics are the game changers for the successful enterprises, SMEs and Start-Ups of the future.

Recognising the unification of these ICT trends and opportunities, Cloud World Forum Asia combines new case studies from across the SMAC: Social Media, Mobility, Analytics and Cloud landscape in the APAC region.

SAP Continues to Invest in Data Centers Worldwide

SAP Delivers Reliable and Secure Data Centers, Powering the Future of Businesses

WALLDORF, Germany — April 22, 2014SAP AG (NYSE: SAP) continues to invest in new data centers that enable companies to power the future of business using SAP® Cloud powered by SAP HANA®. Worldwide, SAP hosts its cloud solutions in 16 data centers in EMEA, MEE, North America, China, and Australia that meet high security and operations standards. Customers can transition their business safely to the cloud at their desired speed. This allows them to focus on operational excellence and benefit from the real-time capabilities of the in-memory platform SAP HANA.

According to the market intelligence firm IDC, the global cloud market will double to EUR 98 billion by 2016[1].Today, more than than 73,000 companies and over 36 million people use SAP’s cloud-based solutions. This is the largest user base for enterprise cloud solutions worldwide

This year, SAP has opened a total of three new data centers in Sydney, Australia, as well as Tokyo and Osaka, Japan. As part of its open ecosystem strategy, the company has also invested in existing partner data centers in Moscow in Russia that will run cloud solutions from SAP. Additional data centers in Brazil and Canada are planned for later in 2014. SAP maintains rigorous data compliance, data accessibility and security standards that all partner data centers must meet.

Strict Data Compliance and High Security Standards

SAP data centers build the backbone of the company’s cloud business, including the SAP HANA® Enterprise Cloud service as well as Cloud Solutions such as SAP Cloud for Customer and SAP Cloud for HR. State-of-the-art technology and excellent security based on high industry standards protect data not only virtually but also physically against natural disasters. They provide high availability as well as back-ups.
“SAP data centers offer customers a variety of options for the SAP Cloud portfolio. Depending on the respective data center, offerings can range from a public to a managed cloud,” said Gerhard Oswald, member of the Executive Board of SAP AG,. “Customers benefit from a dramatic simplification of IT landscapes, all in the cloud and powered by SAP HANA, and from the ability to truly power the future of their business with SAP Cloud powered by SAP HANA.”

All SAP data centers and facilities will run on 100 percent renewable energy by the end of 2014, which helps minimize the carbon footprint of both SAP and its customers. In Germany, SAP received the German Data Center Award 2014 for Integrated Energy Efficiency in the Data Center.

An open ecosystem is important for the success of the SAP Cloud portfolio. The company actively helps partners offer the SAP HANA Enterprise Cloud service from their own data centers while helping ensure they are fully secure and compliant. Partners also have access to the relevant knowledge they require to be successful, including expertise in the deployment of SAP HANA Enterprise Cloud and the transition process from an existing on-premise environment.

For more information, visit the SAP Newsroom.

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