AAPT looks forward to $50 million cloud business

A reasonable goal for the telco’s infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) business in the next few years, according to AAPT CEO.

With a plan to offer more cloud-based services, a $50 million revenue goal for AAPT’s Infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) business is a reasonable target in the next few years, according to the telco’s CEO, David Yuile.

AAPT has teamed up with software giant, Oracle, to release Solaris-as-a-Service, an infrastructure and platform cloud product based. It is based on Oracle’s Solaris enterprise operating system and Sun Microsystems hardware.

Oracle bought Sun in 2010.

Yuile revealed his ambitions to launch a series of infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) products when he took over from his predecessor, Paul Broad, in June.

Solaris-as-a-Service is the first out of the gates and will be followed by complementary products soon, according to the AAPT chief.

“Some of the new ones will be from Oracle; obviously it has a huge range of applications and product suites but we won’t be selling the applications,” he said. “We will be the infrastructure behind the applications so when Oracle goes out to customers, it will recommend them to host the applications on our Solaris infrastructure.

“There will be a great demand for this from the developer community since a lot of IT departments do tests and development.”

The partnership with Oracle is a strategic one but it is by no means exclusive although Yuile said there aren’t many telco competitors with the same kind of expertise as AAPT.

The cloud services offered by AAPT, including Solaris-as-a-Service, have been used by the telco in-house. The company also has a number of datacentres scattered across Australia. Storage and backup would be the next logical extension for AAPT’s cloud business, Yuile said.

“Not the cheap and nasty stuff, but high-end services – typically attached to virtual servers as well – with a high value proposition,” he said. “We’re really going to be up there offering enterprise-grade storage, backup and restore solutions.”

Another product AAPT is interested in exploring is virtual desktops but the company is unsure of how it will deliver that to customers.

“We already run hundreds of virtual desktops so we think it will be a simple extension for us but we’re less clear around our positioning on that for our clients,” Yuile said.

AAPT is confident Solaris-as-a-Service along with its future product portfolio will bring in the big bucks from multinationals in Asia looking to establish a presence in Australia.

The telco’s revenue expectations for Solaris-as-a-Service are around $5-10 million for the first 6-12 months. Yuile hopes to get a better idea of customer demands when he presents at an Oracle conference in two weeks time.

“There have been reports that say IaaS is a relatively small market; we tend to disagree,” he said. “In the context of IaaS, for that part of our business to hit the $50 million revenue mark is reasonable over a two or three year basis.

“It will be a bit slow to start… but in 3-4 years it could be a big thing and $50 million would be great to achieve.”

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