There’s old saying about there being no need to buy the cow when the milk is free. That maxim applies to cloud computing in that from the perspective of the solution providers in the channel there is no shortage of cloud computing services to partner with.
So it’s with a certain amount of surprise that the channel recently watched Dimension Data move to acquire OpSource, a provider of a cloud computing service based on open source software. As a unit of NTT in Japan, Dimension Data now has the means to expand its product lineup. But by acquiring Opscode, Dimension Data starts to look a little more like a vendor than a traditional IT services company.
According to Keao Caindec, chief marketing officer for OpSource, the company will operate as part of Dimension Data’s cloud business unit. But Caindec says OpSourcee will continue to operate as its own entity, which means it will have its own direct sales force and channel. OpSource, however, will give Dimension Data a new cloud computing orchestration platform that its sales staff can sell to customers building their own private clouds, says Caindec.
The real opportunity, notes Caindec, is that most internal IT organizations don’t have the internal skills or processes in place that are needed to master cloud computing. That creates a major opportunity for Dimension Data at a time when interest in in all things cloud is riding high, notes Caindec.
What will really be interesting to watch is to what degree IT services companies in the channel will start either acquiring or developing their own intellectual IT capital. At the end of the day, cloud computing has a lot more to do with how IT is managed than it does with new technologies. But as the way IT is managed increasingly becomes a product rather than a set of discrete customer engagement, cloud computing in many ways turns traditional IT services into a set of automated products that are delivered via the cloud.
Obviously, it’s too early to say what the channel might look like this time next year, but chances are a lot more traditional IT services companies are going to start looking a lot like Dimension Data.Tags: IT services, solution providers, channel, Cloud Computing, NTT, OpSource, Dimension Data