French cloud provider OVH has acquired the VMware vCloud Air business.

The company had recently established roots in the Canadian market, specifically the province of Quebec, to gain a foothold in North America.

The acquisition of the VMware vCloud allows OVH to accelerate its deployments in the U.S. The VMware vCloud is an enterprise-class, secure public cloud platform offering computing, storage, networking, and disaster recovery in an Infrastructure-as-a-Service model along with hybrid cloud services.

Vice chairman and CEO of OVH Laurent Allard said the deal was consummated yesterday and that, for now, he will be keeping the financial details confidential.

The VMware vCloud enables OVH to take its offerings to the next level specifically when it comes to private cloud. OVH has been a strategic partner of VMware for the past seven years.

One of the reasons for this deal is that VMware is now providing hybrid and cross-cloud software and services. Given this market shift, VMware has decided to transition the vCloud Air business to OVH.

OVH plans to brand it vCloud Air Powered by OVH for data centre extension, consolidation and recovery.

The VMware vCloud also helps to solidify OVH’s channel strategy. Allard said the VMware vCloud can only help channel partners becoming faster and better.

“It’s clear that channel partners are the last mile for customers to help them make the right decision on solutions and deployments. The channel is now more sophisticated with cloud and they are crucial to help OVH accelerate our business. The channel will make the difference in how customers build and managed cloud,” Allard said.

He also needs the channel to help OVH secure larger deals and considered the channel community more as strategic partners than resellers.

“I really want to push joint engagements with partners especially on larger deals,” he added.

Allard will be in Lyon, France tomorrow to present a keynote speech for channel partners where he plans to outline a new cloud strategy for this group. This will involve a new channel program with a focus on support, new guidebooks, training and certifications that he hopes will make the channel partners become more efficient.

In a statement, Pat Gelsinger, CEO of VMware, said vCloud customers will now have access to OVH’s global footprint and support, while still retaining the company’s software-defined data centre technology.

OVH has been a long-time vCloud Air alliance partner of VMware. This partnership now handles more than 200,000 VMs who run the vSphere private cloud.

In 2016, OVH initiated a strategic partnership with Rogers for public cloud deployments for the small-to-mid-size business market that was supported by its Toronto launch. Allard believes the VMware vCloud along with Rogers will better position OVH in the Canadian market and accelerate deployments nationwide.

From a competitive point of view, Allard said there is no other equivalent to the VMware vCloud IaaS platform for private deployments in Canada.

OVH is also evangelizing the importance of private cloud. Allard said that last year’s AWS Canada announced for this market was a big step in the mindset of customers on public cloud. But public cloud does not work of all customers, he believes. “My message is that both private and public clouds are important. We need choices and we are well equipped for dual approaches on cloud,” Allard said.

The transaction is expected to close in the second quarter of this year.



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