Telstra Cloud boss, Erez Yarkoni, delivers strategy at vForum

Telstra Cloud boss, Erez Yarkoni, delivers strategy at vForum

VMware's vCloud Air joins the growing list of Cloud vendors on Telstra's books

Telstra Director of Cloud, Erez Yarkoni, has laid out the next step in the company's sweeping Cloud strategy at vForum 2014, Sydney.

Telstra has added VMware vCloud Air, which will go live in early 2015, to its growing stable of Cloud offerings and will seek to use its might and expertise to accelerate adoption and availability of these products in the Australian market.

Yarkoni said the addition vCloud Air, which was launched by VMware in 2013 as vCloud Hyrbrid service, was part of a four-pronged strategy to deliver the business solutions of the future.

"Telstra is making a great investment to help customers build the business solutions of the future out of the IT components of the future," he said.

"We found four ways that we reinforced that strategy: through the network, through the partners, through the products that we put on top of those and through the service management.

"We are very excited that we get to bring such great technology into Australia and accelerate the availability of those here."

vCloud will be hosted in Telstra's Australian datacentres and follows a similar deal between Telstra and networking giant Cisco in April.

Under the latter deal, Cisco built a Cloud service with its own kit in Telstra's Australian datacentres, based on Red Hat's version of OpenStack.

Yarkoni said Telstra's relatively new portfolio was rich and set to grow further.

"We have private cloud solutions from the VMware family with Vblock, we have the utility and public Cloud solutions, ones we announced earlier, we have SaaS solutions in portfolio, and we are creating this marketplace of available components," he said.

"There's one more important thing that Telstra brings to the table with our partners and it was very evident in this initiative on Vcloud Air, which is: without both Telstra and Vmware sitting together and figuring out how it makes sense to put it here in Australia, it would have taken a lot longer to show up."

Yarkoni, a former T-Mobile CIO who arrived at Telstra in 2013 following the company's initial push into Cloud, said there was value in the assets Telstra brought to partners

"We bring them into this environment in Australia and we accelerate the existence or the availability of some of these solutions in this market and you will see the portfolio of Telstra grow as we announce more of these partnerships," he said.

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"In a year we have put a lot into our portfolio. We have a webscale open stack Cloud in our portfolio, we have our existing VMware type of architecture based Cloud that some of our customers are on and we don't intend to stop supporting it until our customers don't want us to stop supporting it.

"We have added a private Cloud version on Vblock, a fully managed solution on top of Vblock, all the way to the service management."

In 2010, Telstra announced an $800 million investment in Cloud.

This initial thrust into the cloud involved investment with EMC, Cisco, VMware and BMC.

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Yarkonis said the company has also invested in connectivity to the public Clouds already available in Australia (Azure and AWS).

"We are transforming our SaaS marketplace and we have put the first two applications in there.

"It will be a migration of our previous market place into this market place and then enriching the SaaS.

"We are investing a lot in that portfolio... and of course today we added vCloud Air."

vCloud Air will hit the market long after many of its competitors (Azure, AWS, Cisco, Dell), launched their own services from an Australian datacentres.

However vCloud Air may hit a sweet spot with VMware customers looking to migrate applications from private to public Clouds.

Yarkoni said Telstra had plans to expand the VMware deal and supported the ostensible advantage it would bring to current customers.

"We all find ourselves with a good install base of VMware applications that need a destination. I don't know of a better destination of those workloads then vCloud Air if you're really strategic about what you want to do with your IT and IT components," he said.

"It's with a lot less friction than trying to move a VMware load to a different environment."

But the obvious strength Telstra brings to a complex supply chain is service management, according to Yarkoni.

"We need a service management component: and that would the fourth kind of pillar that Telstra has put together, or has been putting together in order to address Cloud solutions," he said.

"If we don't automate the entire chain - none of this beautiful elastic as-a-service world really lives to its promise and that is something we are investing very heavily in."

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