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To expand its hybrid multi-cloud offering to its customers, leading internet services provider, Internet Solutions (IS), a long-time successful partner of Microsoft, will extend its cloud platform offerings to harness local Azure capabilities.

IS’s offering will expand from traditional networking, voice and hosting, to include cloud capabilities on Azure, Voice and eventually AI.­­

IS, the largest provider of hosting services to the South African market, offers datacentre hosting and managed cloud services to customers. This partnership will also mean that IS, together with Microsoft will build a Cloud Centre of Excellence for clients, ultimately, resulting in better and broader service offerings for clients.

“We were aware of the changing market and saw the need to create a differential offering for our organisation that sets us apart from the competition. We identified the opportunity to extend our cloud portfolio to customers wanting to leverage the power of Azure locally, through Microsoft’s recently launched hyperscale datacentres in South Africa. Our longstanding partnership with Microsoft enables us to unlock new capabilities within our business,” said Basha Pillay, Executive Head for Cloud and Collaboration at Internet Solutions.

Basha went on to explain, “This partnership will also enable us to work with our existing customers to help migrate their Windows & SQL 2008 environments to Azure – further extending our support to clients and ensuring they are not only ready for the future but also taking maximum advantage of today’s technologies.”

Nearly two-thirds of Fortune 500 companies use Microsoft Azure for their cloud computing solution and an average of 1,000 customers are signing up every day. The benefits of the cloud include spinning up virtual machines in minutes, providing scalable and durable cloud storage, and backup and recovery solutions for businesses of all sizes.

Cloud usage goes far beyond the development and test workloads with which people originally started. Enterprises are driving a second wave of cloud adoption, including putting their most mission-critical, demanding systems in the cloud.

“We’re in a time where technology is one of the core ways organisations can better serve customers and differentiate themselves from their competitors. We’re excited that IS is one of our trusted partners in this era of digital transformation. Our focus is on building the right solutions for our customers and by bringing the benefits of delivering cloud services from datacentres in South Africa, we are improving access to cloud and internet services across the continent,” says, Lionel Moyal, Commercial Partners Lead at Microsoft South Africa.

Earlier this year, Microsoft announced the launch of its enterprise-grade datacentres in Johannesburg and Cape Town. With this announcement, Microsoft became the first global, hyperscale public cloud provider delivering services from datacentres based in Africa. The availability of Microsoft’s cloud services delivered from South Africa means local companies can securely and reliably move their businesses to the cloud while maintaining data residency and compliance requirements.

Information stored in one of Microsoft’s datacentres can be easily and securely replicated in any of the 54 regions for disaster recovery measures, offering businesses uninterrupted access to their work.