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‘Every customer is talking about multi-cloud’: Google Cloud APAC channel chief

‘Every customer is talking about multi-cloud’: Google Cloud APAC channel chief

Ash Willis stressed the importance of ‘partner choice’ in cloud providers

Google Cloud’s regional channel chief has reiterated the provider’s commitment to multi-cloud environments following recent push-back demonstrated by global rival Amazon Web Services (AWS).

Ash Willis, the vendor’s Asia Pacific head of cloud partners and alliances, claimed multi-cloud is “something every customer” is talking about in an effort to gain “flexibility” for their environments.

His comments follows the beta roll-out of Anthos, Google cloud’s hybrid and multi-cloud management platform to “early adopter partners” in APAC, including Australia.

Speaking to ARN, Willis said: “Multi-cloud is something every customer is talking about in one form or another. The role of a partner is to serve customers and to provide the right solution to them regardless of who the vendor is. It’s important to have that level of flexibility.”

He also stressed that it was important for partners to “have choice”, adding: “Partners operate their own business. What I would never do is tell a partner I would work with you provided we are the only vendor you commit to. That partner, after all, isn’t the only partner we work with.”

Google Cloud’s push into multi-cloud fostering multi-cloud environments wasn’t a surprise to partners when announced at its Next ‘19 conference in April, with Deloitte’s Peter Ryan noting they were “last to the race” in terms of global footprint.

The provider currently holds four per cent of the infrastructure-as-a-service, which contrasts starkly against AWS 47 per cent, although it has seen 60 per cent growth, more than double that of AWS.

Meanwhile, AWS recently encountered criticism for its new policy preventing partners from discussing other public clouds in their marketing messaging.

Simon Elisha, AWS’ head of solution architecture for A/NZ public sector, defended this by claiming partners saw “best success” from customers when they “choose to work with the cloud provider of their choice”.

However, Servian CEO Tony Nicol, a so-called 'early-adopter partner' of Anthos, also reiterated the end-user demand for all things multi-cloud. 

“We have a duty to the customer: if working with them on a multi-cloud strategy upsets one of the cloud providers, then we can live with that,” he told ARN at this week’s Google Cloud Summit in Sydney. 

“AWS’ position is that they feel wholehearted that they can give everything that the customer wants and they are doing very well with cloud, but many of our clients want multi-cloud and some of the specialist capabilities in other cloud environments. 

“Wanting partner alignment is not uncommon with vendors, but ultimately they always do what the client wants.”


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