Brexit, schmexit: BT and Oracle join hands for a cloudy tryst

But partnerships not the same as winning new biz – analyst

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BT has hopped into bed with Oracle in a deal that promises to provide the underlying network connectivity for Oracle’s hybrid cloud.

BT Cloud Connect for OracleFastConnect is built on BT’s IP Connect virtual private network (VPN) and will link customers' on-premises IT to Oracle data centres in London or Amsterdam.

The deal is the latest in a series of partnerships by BT Global Services to push itself forward as a cloudy integrator, having launched its so-called "cloud of clouds" last year. BT and Oracle aim to offer the service starting from the final quarter of calendar year 2016.

According to Oracle, its cloud has 70 million users and runs in 19 data centres around the world.

BT already has similar agreements in place with Microsoft Azure, Amazon Web Services, and HPE Helion. But Martin Courtney, an analyst at TechMarketView, noted that the former state monopoly still needs to win more business.

"Partners are one thing but customers are another, of course, and BT’s cloud integration strategy now needs the seal of approval from high profile contracts," he said.

He added: "The telco signed a deal that will see it provide connectivity into Microsoft Azure for online accountancy software firm Exact earlier this month, but we don’t think this is the type of multinational BT originally had in mind."

Questions have been raised as to how well BT's Global Services arm fits in with the rest of the business' push into the consumer market, having completed its £12.5bn gobble of EE this year.

The division has remained a lacklustre area of the business, with revenue falling by four per cent to £6.5bn for the full year 2015/16.

Luis Alvarez, chief exec of BT's Global Services, said of the Oracle love-in: “We are accelerating our drive to be the world’s leading cloud services integrator and I am proud that BT is becoming the first global network services provider to offer direct access to the Oracle Cloud.” ®


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