Tag Archives: Partners

New action to disrupt world’s largest online criminal network – Microsoft on the Issues

Today, Microsoft and partners across 35 countries took coordinated legal and technical steps to disrupt one of the world’s most prolific botnets, called Necurs, which has infected more than nine million computers globally. This disruption is the result of eight years of tracking and planning and will help ensure the criminals behind this network are no longer able to use key elements of its infrastructure to execute cyberattacks.

A botnet is a network of computers that a cybercriminal has infected with malicious software, or malware. Once infected, criminals can control those computers remotely and use them to commit crimes. Microsoft’s Digital Crimes Unit, BitSight and others in the security community first observed the Necurs botnet in 2012 and have seen it distribute several forms of malware, including the GameOver Zeus banking trojan.

The Necurs botnet is one of the largest networks in the spam email threat ecosystem, with victims in nearly every country in the world. During a 58-day period in our investigation, for example, we observed that one Necurs-infected computer sent a total of 3.8 million spam emails to over 40.6 million potential victims.

Necurs is believed to be operated by criminals based in Russia and has also been used for a wide range of crimes including pump-and-dump stock scams, fake pharmaceutical spam email and “Russian dating” scams. It has also been used to attack other computers on the internet, steal credentials for online accounts, and steal people’s personal information and confidential data. Interestingly, it seems the criminals behind Necurs sell or rent access to the infected computer devices to other cybercriminals as part of a botnet-for-hire service. Necurs is also known for distributing financially targeted malware and ransomware, cryptomining, and even has a DDoS (distributed denial of service) capability that has not yet been activated but could be at any moment.

On Thursday, March 5, the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York issued an order enabling Microsoft to take control of U.S.-based infrastructure Necurs uses to distribute malware and infect victim computers. With this legal action and through a collaborative effort involving public-private partnerships around the globe, Microsoft is leading activities that will prevent the criminals behind Necurs from registering new domains to execute attacks in the future.

This was accomplished by analyzing a technique used by Necurs to systematically generate new domains through an algorithm. We were then able to accurately predict over six million unique domains that would be created in the next 25 months. Microsoft reported these domains to their respective registries in countries around the world so the websites can be blocked and thus prevented from becoming part of the Necurs infrastructure. By taking control of existing websites and inhibiting the ability to register new ones, we have significantly disrupted the botnet.

Microsoft is also taking the additional step of partnering with Internet Service Providers (ISPs) and others around the world to rid their customers’ computers of malware associated with the Necurs botnet. This remediation effort is global in scale and involves collaboration with partners in industry, government and law enforcement via the Microsoft Cyber Threat Intelligence Program (CTIP). Through CTIP, Microsoft provides law enforcement, government Computer Emergency Response Teams (CERTs), ISPs and government agencies responsible for the enforcement of cyber laws and the protection of critical infrastructure with better insights into criminal cyber infrastructure located within their jurisdiction, as well as a view of compromised computers and victims impacted by such criminal infrastructure.

For this disruption, we are working with ISPs, domain registries, government CERTs and law enforcement in Mexico, Colombia, Taiwan, India, Japan, France, Spain, Poland and Romania, among others. Each of us has a critical role to play in protecting customers and keeping the internet safe.

To make sure your computer is free of malware, visit support.microsoft.com/botnets.

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Author: Microsoft News Center

VMware Partner Connect offers flexibility, new tiers

VMware has rolled out a revamped channel program that offers partners greater freedom to select competencies and rewards partners that deliver services on the company’s full technology stack.

The VMware Partner Connect initiative represents a “complete [overhaul] of our partner program,” said Jenni Flinders, VMware’s global channel chief. She said the program maps to the company’s strategic priorities and gives partners a “clear and easy path to define how they want to maximize opportunities with VMware.”

The new partner program has been in the works for about 18 months. VMware has periodically updated partners on its progress. Richard Steeves, senior director of worldwide partner programs at VMware, said the program changes also aim to accommodate customers’ digital transformation needs.

“As we continue to look to support our customers’ digital transformation — and support their need to run any app on any device on any cloud — we needed to ensure we had the right partner with the right skill set,” he said.

VMware partners can pursue individual competencies across areas such as hybrid cloud, which incorporates data center virtualization, digital workspace, application modernization and security.

VMware Partner Connect offers three tiers for its channel allies: Partner, Advanced Partner and Principal Partner. The Partner and Advanced Partner tiers are for partners that engage with customers at the traditional resale, transactional customer relationship level. Principal Partners must obtain Master Services Competencies and demonstrate the ability to build and deliver services on the VMware stack.

Principal Partners qualify for deployment and consumption incentives and receive priority treatment for VMware business planning and co-selling opportunities, according to VMware.

In other program moves, VMware will integrate the VeloCloud, Carbon Black and Pivotal partner programs into VMware Partner Connect over the course of this year. Flinders said the program’s new structure will provide “easy plug and play” for integrating the channel initiatives of companies VMware acquires down the road.

Steeves said VMware Partner Connect marks “one of the largest transformations that VMware has brought to market in its partner ecosystem in upward of a decade.”

IBM pursues public cloud growth with Infosys partnership

In a bid to build out enterprise deployments of IBM public cloud, IBM has expanded its partnership with global systems integrator Infosys.

Under the alliance, Infosys plans to target enterprise organizations in highly regulated industries, including financial services, insurance and healthcare, with IBM’s public cloud offerings. Infosys said it will also look to incorporate Red Hat’s open source products in enterprise deals. Infosys is the first global systems integrator to enlist in the IBM public cloud ecosystem.

[Infosys] is our first partner that is really advocating for everything around the IBM public cloud.
Bob LordSenior vice president of cognitive applications and ecosystems, IBM

“This is our first partner that is really advocating for everything around the IBM public cloud,” said Bob Lord, senior vice president of cognitive applications and ecosystems at IBM.

Ravi Kumar S., president of Infosys, said IBM has differentiated its public cloud platform from competitors by zeroing in on enterprises’ concerns for privacy, regulatory compliance, security and systems downtime.

Lord said while the IBM-Infosys partnership is an important step for building out IBM’s public cloud presence, it doesn’t represent a change in the vendor’s overall channel strategy. “I think it is more of a focused effort of … understanding what [Infosys’] needs are” and enabling Infosys to grow its IBM public cloud business, he said.

For example, IBM will provide Infosys with technical support for clients’ cloud migrations. Additionally, the two companies will collaborate on activities such as creating proofs of concept, running cloud pilots and staffing Infosys’ client innovation centers. “We have a joint go-to-market [and campaign investments] on joint assets … and [will] drive IBM public cloud as one of the foundational pillars in cloud journeys,” Kumar S. said.

Infosys runs several client innovation centers in North America, Lord noted. “The customers can come in, go through design-thinking sessions, and architect what their long-term infrastructure is going to be as an Infosys client. And IBM is part of that overall program,” he said. Infosys will launch IBM public cloud practices in its innovation centers starting with its Hartford, Conn., and Raleigh, N.C., locations.

“Working with a systems integrator like Infosys, who has the client relationships and the credibility and honestly … is actually where we want to be, so we can propagate the use case around [IBM public cloud] and what the product has to offer,” Lord said.

Cameyo targets MSPs with app delivery platform

Cameyo, a Cary, N.C., company that provides a virtual application delivery platform, has launched a product for managed service providers.

Cameyo for MSPs aims to let service providers deliver Windows applications to any device and manage customers remotely from a single dashboard. CompuGroup Medical US and Xpertek IT are among Cameyo’s initial MSP partners, according to the company. Cameyo for MSPs pricing starts at $10 per user, per month. The fee drops to as low as $1 per user, per month if bulk discounts are applied. Cameyo is offering MSPs a free trial of the product.

Andrew Miller, co-founder and CEO at Cameyo, said the MSP product was an offshoot of the company’s prior work with MSPs.

“Throughout our ongoing relationships with these MSPs, we received multiple requests to give them the ability to manage all of their customers from one admin dashboard, rather than having them manage each customer in a separate console,” he said.

MSPs also needed a simplified billing system, so Cameyo developed its Service Provider License Agreement model, which involves a single SKU.

Miller said he anticipates the MSP portion of Cameyo’s business to reach 15% to 20% of its revenue in 2020, “and then growing considerably in 2021.”

Other news

  • T-Systems, the IT services subsidiary of Deutsche Telekom, will provide managed services and open a Google Cloud competence center under a new partnership with the cloud provider. The competence center will focus on large-scale workload migrations, SAP application modernization, the creation of AI and machine learning offerings, and cloud-based data warehouse and data analytics offerings, according to the companies. Last week, Google Cloud and SADA, a business and technology consultancy in Los Angeles, unveiled a $500 million partnering agreement targeting Anthos, data warehouse modernization and contact center AI.
  • SMBs lack the personnel and training to get the most out of their data analytics tools, according to a survey from Onepath, an MSP based in Atlanta. Fifty-seven percent of the 100-plus SMB managers and executives Onepath polled said they didn’t have the right people to manage the implementation of data analytics offerings, while 62% said they could better use the tools if they had more training.
  • Mission, an MSP based in Los Angeles, said it is now the exclusive certified AWS SMB reseller of Cloudwick’s Amorphic data and analytics platform for AWS data warehousing.
  • Pax8, a cloud distributor based in Denver, inked a partnership with Bitdefender, a cybersecurity vendor. Pax8 will deliver Bitdefender Cloud Security for MSPs.
  • Cisco expanded its Designed for Business portfolio for small-business buyers and added a button on its website to connect customers with a Cisco partner to buy directly on Cisco.com.
  • Samsara, a company in the industrial IoT market, updated its fleet and industrial channel partner program. Additions include Owl Academy, an online training program, and the Samsara Flywheel Certification program. According to Samsara, the latter program provides technical training on Samsara’s industrial product offerings and how to build services around them.
  • Managed cloud services provider Rackspace opened an office in Dubai, UAE, as part of a push into the Middle East. Rackspace said it currently has more than 500 customers in the region.
  • Managed cloud services provider Rackspace opened an office in Dubai, UAE, as part of a push into the Middle East. Rackspace said it currently has more than 500 customers in the region.
  • CoreView, a SaaS management platform vendor, is partnering with Metsys, a digital transformation services provider in France.
  • Accenture named Silicon Valley entrepreneur Tom Lounibos as managing director of Accenture Ventures.
  • Cognition360, which provides a data analytics platform for MSPs using ConnectWise software, appointed Aaron Kennedy as its CEO.

Market Share is a news roundup published every Friday.

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Veeam acquisition puts heat on rivals

Although at least one analyst warned that the Veeam Software acquisition by Insight Partners should have its competitors wary, two of Veeam’s closest backup rivals said they will benefit from the deal.

After disclosing the deal last week, Veeam and private equity firm Insight executives said the backup vendor will shift its strategy toward hybrid cloud data protection and expanding its U.S. presence.

Christophe Bertrand, senior analyst at Enterprise Strategy Group, said Veeam’s competitors should be wary of a competitive shakeup. Unlike the scenario where a larger tech player buys up Veeam to bolster its product offerings, Insight has stepped in solely to expand Veeam’s reach to generate a return on investment. Bertrand said Veeam now has the financial backing to acquire and accelerate on its expansion strategy.

“Clearly they have a sponsor here who is very focused on growth. It’s a private equity firm; they want a good return out of it,” Bertrand said.

However, cloud-based backup vendor Druva and data protection and management software vendor Commvault painted the Veeam acquisition in a positive light for them. Executives from those rivals said Veeam’s acquisition validates the importance of backup — and proves their technology and business strategies are on the right track.

Druva CTO Stephen Manley said his company is already established at cloud-based backup, which is part of Veeam’s new focus.

“We’ve got a head start in this market. They have a lot of work to get to where we are,” Manley said.

Druva launched its Druva Phoenix platform in 2014, enabling server backup to the cloud, built on AWS. The company acquired Cloud Ranger in 2018 for its AWS backup and disaster recovery features and received a $130 million funding round in June 2019, led by Viking Global Investors.

Manley said the Veeam acquisition will help Druva by drawing attention to cloud-based backup. When large, established vendors make a move into this industry, it generates buzz that customers will inevitably follow. Manley said this leads to customers eventually finding Druva, as well.

Ranga Rajagopalan, vice president of product management at Commvault, said the Veeam acquisition underscores the importance of the backup market. Since June 2018, investors have poured more than $1 billion into cloud data protection vendors Cohesity, Rubrik, Actifio, Druva and Clumio. Insight Partners also poured $500 million into Veeam in January 2019, a year before buying out the entire company.

Rajagopalan said backup is a way to gather all the data. While protecting it remains important, Rajagopalan said that investors and industry experts envision using that data to accelerate application development, analytics and other non-backup purposes.

“It’s more than just backup — it’s data management. There’s so much more customers can do with their data if they can manage it better,” Rajagopalan said.

Commvault’s strategy has shifted toward broadening beyond backup, according to Tom Broderick, vice president of strategy and chief of staff at Commvault. He said customers wanting to do more with their backup data has been a growing trend, and the Veeam acquisition shows it’s a trend investors are keen on riding and getting a return on.

“We see it as validation for backup and the broader data management scope,” Broderick said. “It’s very much an encouraging sign.”

Rajagopalan said Commvault has an advantage in the enterprise market because its software can be used across all environments. Veeam would have to get a similar breadth of coverage in order to land enterprise deals. Just protecting VMware environments nowadays is no longer sufficient, as enterprise customers use other hypervisors, as well. Rajagopalan also added that merely protecting the data is similarly insufficient.

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Accelerating innovation with Dynamics 365 and the Power Platform – Dynamics 365 Blog

Every year, we bring together thousands of Microsoft partners from around the world to celebrate, connect, and learn about what’s coming in the next year. Just last week, I had the chance to join this year’s Microsoft Inspire with 13,000 of our partners in Las Vegas, and it was an amazing week full of energy and excitement.

I had the opportunity to share how we’re accelerating innovation with Dynamics 365 and the Power Platform in two featured sessions. Hayden Stafford joined me to talk about the business opportunity in FY20 for Business Applications, and Charles Lamanna and Arun Ulagaratchagan showed off the innovation and partner investments across the Power Platform. In both sessions, partners from Hitachi Solutions, VeriPark, WorkSpan, and EY joined me on stage to talk about the opportunities they’re seeing in the market. Check out the session recordings to see more.

We also shared a few major announcements with the partner community throughout the week that will deepen our partnership, align with how our business is growing, and help customers realize the potential of digital transformation. Take a look at a few highlights below.

Launching the new Microsoft Business Applications ISV Connect Program

ISVs that build on Microsoft Dynamics 365 and PowerApps can offer their customers innovative apps they couldn’t build elsewhere using connections to industry-leading cloud services on Azure and developer tools built just for them.

After previewing elements of the program in the spring, we officially launched the Business Applications ISV Connect Program on July 15th. This program brings together platform and program benefits created specifically for ISVs to support their success. We’re laying a path for a stronger partnership with our ISVs through ongoing platform investments, development tooling enhancements, and go-to-market support for mutual success. Read Steven Guggenheimer’s blog for more information about the program’s requirements and benefits.

Expanding our Dynamics 365 Industry Accelerators

We know our partners want to go to market fast. Our industry accelerators help them do just that.

At Inspire, we introduced two new industry accelerators: the Dynamics 365 Automotive Accelerator and Dynamics 365 Banking Accelerator. We also announced significant updates to the Dynamics 365 Nonprofit Accelerator.

Each of these accelerators was developed in deep partnership with industry experts to provide pre-built dashboards, sample data, and workflows that align with common industry scenarios. Steven Guggenheimer’s blog has more on this update as well.

Updating our Dynamics 365 packaging model

In October, Microsoft will be moving from “one-size-fits-all” Microsoft Dynamics 365 licensing plans to focus on providing customers with the specific Dynamics 365 applications that meet the unique needs of their organization. Customers need software that aligns to their functional roles and scenarios, and they require the ability to add or remove applications as their company grows and changes over time. The new licensing model will allow customers to purchase the applications they need, when they need them. Each application is extensible and applications can be easily mixed and matched to configure integrated solutions that align to a customer’s unique business requirements.

To learn more about these new options for your customers, check out the Inspire sessions “Customer Engagement Licensing Updates” and “Unified Operations Licensing Updates.”

Introducing new licensing options for PowerApps and Microsoft Flow

Over the past few months, we’ve announced a set of continued investments in the Power Platform and vision for one connected platform that enables everyone, regardless of their skill set or background, to innovate.

In addition to the general availability of innovations like AI Builder and PowerApps Portals, we will be introducing new licensing options in October 2019 shaped by the feedback we’ve received from our customers and the community of makers and creators who have been with us on the Power Platform journey. At Inspire we previewed new licensing options for PowerApps and Microsoft Flow that:

  • Make it easier to get started with a single use case before rolling out the full platform for all users.
  • Make licensing easier to understand by simplifying the complex feature-level differences between P1 and P2 plans.

To learn more about these new options for your customers, check out the Inspire session Microsoft Power Platform business model and licensing updates or read the PowerApps community blog post with additional details.

Customers realizing the potential of digital transformation

Throughout the event, we heard inspiring stories from customers and partners around the world.

One highlight came in Monday’s Corenote with Judson Althoff. We saw how Unilever is transforming its business with Microsoft technology, including Power BI and PowerApps. With connected data at the core, Unilever is able to increase productivity with more accessible insights and empower individuals to solve problems on their own, without a developer.

On Wednesday, Satya Nadella talked about Crane Worldwide Logistics, a Dynamics 365 customer who grew from a startup to a major player in the global logistics industry over the past 10 years. With Dynamics 365 for Sales and LinkedIn Sales Navigator, Crane can seamlessly combine customer engagement data with data about customer and seller activities from Office 365, as well as from LinkedIn – even when these interactions take place outside their CRM. And with Dynamics 365 Sales Insights, sellers are able to focus on the right customers, thanks to AI-driven insights that flag existing accounts that need extra attention, as well as leads that offer the most potential.

These are just two of the stories we shared at Microsoft Inspire this year. If you missed any part of this year’s event, take some time to check out the content on-demand to learn how you can build success in the coming year.

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Author: Microsoft News Center

For Sale – MacBook Air 13.3” mid 2013


I am selling my partners MacBook Air. It hasn’t really been very heavily used, there are a few scratches on the base, and a very light one on the lid. Other than that, very nice MacBook.

Comes with power adapters, leaflet and box.

Spec is;
13.3 inch screen
1.3ghz intel core i5
4gb ram
128gb flash storage.

Battery count is 216

Pictures are attached.

Price and currency: 310
Delivery: Delivery cost is included within my country
Payment method: Bank transfer or cash on collection
Location: salisbury
Advertised elsewhere?: Not advertised elsewhere
Prefer goods collected?: I have no preference

This message is automatically inserted in all classifieds forum threads.
By replying to this thread you agree to abide by the trading rules detailed here.
Please be advised, all buyers and sellers should satisfy themselves that the other party is genuine by providing the following via private conversation to each other after negotiations are complete and prior to dispatching goods and making payment:

  • Landline telephone number. Make a call to check out the area code and number are correct, too
  • Name and address including postcode
  • Valid e-mail address

DO NOT proceed with a deal until you are completely satisfied with all details being correct. It’s in your best interest to check out these details yourself.

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Revenue ops main theme at Ramp by InsightSquared conference

Customers, potential customers and partners of InsightSquared Inc. gathered in Boston for two days for Ramp 2018, the dashboard and reporting software vendor’s second annual conference. The Pipeline podcast was there to take in the conference festivities.

Revenue ops was among the main topics discussed at Ramp, with keynotes and conversations dedicated to the idea of bringing together marketing, sales and service departments to improve ROI and revenue.

To help companies with that objective, InsightSquared also unveiled a new set of marketing analytics tools that may help companies uncover insights within the marketing process, including marketing attribution, demand management, and planning and analysis.

“There’s a natural tension between sales and marketing,” said Matisha Ladiwala, GM of marketing analytics for InsightSquared, on the conference stage. Ladiwala ran through a demo of some of the tools’ capabilities before two InsightSquared customers spoke about using the marketing analytics tools.

One of Ladiwala’s demos showed a dashboard that united data from the sales and marketing departments and determined how quickly sales followed up on leads and how many leads were making it into the funnel. This revenue ops approach is beneficial to companies that have traditionally used a more manual, time-intensive approach to reporting, according to InsightSquared.

Aggregating information from areas was very manual and time-consuming.
Guido BartolacciNew Breed

One InsightSquared user, Guido Bartolacci, manager of acquisition and strategy at New Breed, an inbound marketing and sales agency, told conference attendees: “Aggregating information from areas was very manual and time-consuming.”

By using InsightSquared’s new marketing analytics tools while in beta, the marketing and sales agency was able to pull together data from multiple sources quickly and with more insight, Bartolacci said.

Beyond discussing the revenue ops-focused conference, this Pipeline podcast also touches on some of the other speakers at Ramp, including Nate Silver, data scientist and founder of the FiveThirtyEight blog, and TrackMaven CEO Allen Gannett, who gave a lively, entertaining keynote on creativity.

M12 announces $4 million global competition for women entrepreneurs – Stories

Microsoft’s venture fund, M12, partners with EQT Ventures and SVB Financial Group to accelerate funding for women leaders

REDMOND, Wash. — July 26, 2018 M12, Microsoft Corp.’s venture fund, in collaboration with the EQT Ventures fund and SVB Financial Group, on Thursday announced the Female Founders Competition, seeking to accelerate funding for top women-led startups focused on enterprise technology solutions. Two winners will share $4 million in venture funding, as well as access to technology resources, mentoring and more.

Women entrepreneurs receive a disproportionately small amount of venture funding, with only 2.2 percent of the total invested in 2017 going to women-founded startups. Studies have shown that investing in companies founded by women delivers significantly higher returns than the market average. By shining a light on this highly talented, but underfunded group of entrepreneurs, M12 and its partners seek to not only fund innovative female entrepreneurs, but to spotlight the funding gap that exists and the benefits of more equitable distribution of capital.

“We formed M12 to make smart bets on innovative people and their ideas, and the Female Founders Competition is an extension of that mandate,” said Peggy Johnson, executive vice president of Business Development at Microsoft. “This isn’t about checking a box; it’s an opportunity to remind the VC community that investing in women is more than just good values, it’s good business.”

“The EQT Ventures team is all about backing founders with the ambition, drive and vision to build a global success story,” said Alastair Mitchell, partner and investment advisor at EQT Ventures. “This competition reflects this and offers women entrepreneurs a great platform from which to launch their business, providing them with access to capital and mentorship. It also raises awareness of the funding gap between male and female founders, and the EQT Ventures team wants to play an active role in bridging that gap.”

Submissions will be accepted from July 26, 2018, to Sept. 30, 2018, and open across three regions: Europe, Israel, and North America (U.S., Canada and Mexico). Companies will be eligible to apply if they have at least one woman founder, have raised less than $4 million in combined equity funding and/or loans at day of application, and offer or intend to release a product, service or platform that addresses a critical business problem.

“At SVB, we strive to help innovative companies succeed,” said Tracy Isacke, head of Corporate Venture at Silicon Valley Bank. “Research tells us diverse teams are more successful. We believe this is true for our business, our clients’ businesses and the innovation economy at large. Our partnership with Microsoft has created a great opportunity for SVB to engage in this competition and is one of the many ways we are supporting diverse representation in the global innovation ecosystem.”

Up to 10 finalists will pitch in person for the chance to be one of the two startups that earn a $2 million investment as well as access to technology resources, mentoring and additional support. The competition also seeks to drive greater awareness for both finalists and winners, with the potential for future funding from the broader VC community. Full guidelines and contest information can be found on M12’s application page.

About EQT Ventures

EQT Ventures is a European VC fund with commitments of just over €566 million. The fund is based in Luxembourg and has investment advisors stationed in Stockholm, Amsterdam, London, San Francisco and Berlin. Fueled by some of Europe’s most experienced company builders, EQT Ventures helps the next generation of entrepreneurs with capital and hands on support. EQT Ventures is part of EQT, a leading investment firm with approximately EUR 50 billion in raised capital across 27 funds. EQT funds have portfolio companies in Europe, Asia and the US with total sales of more than EUR 19 billion and approximately 110,000 employees.

About SVB Financial Group

For 35 years, SVB Financial Group (NASDAQ: SIVB) and its subsidiaries have helped innovative companies and their investors move bold ideas forward, fast. SVB Financial Group’s businesses, including Silicon Valley Bank, offer commercial and private banking, asset management, private wealth management, brokerage and investment services and funds management services to companies in the technology, life science and healthcare, private equity and venture capital, and premium wine industries. Headquartered in Santa Clara, California, SVB Financial Group operates in centers of innovation around the world. Learn more at svb.com.

About M12

As the corporate venture arm for Microsoft, M12 (formerly Microsoft Ventures) invests in enterprise software companies in the Series A through C funding stage. As part of its value-add to portfolio companies, M12 offers unique access to strategic go-to-market resources and relationships globally. Visit https://m12.vc/ to learn more.

For more information, press only:

Microsoft Media Relations, WE Communications for Microsoft, (425) 638-7777, [email protected]

Lucy Wimmer, PR for EQT Ventures, +44(0) (755) 128-9177, [email protected]

Julia Thompson, PR for Silicon Valley Bank, (415) 764-4707, [email protected]

Note to editors: For more information, news and perspectives from Microsoft, please visit the Microsoft News Center at http://news.microsoft.com. Web links, telephone numbers and titles were correct at time of publication but may have changed. For additional assistance, journalists and analysts may contact Microsoft’s Rapid Response Team or other appropriate contacts listed at http://news.microsoft.com/microsoft-public-relations-contacts.

Microsoft Azure platform sparks partner offerings

With Microsoft Azure platform revenue doubling, channel partners are rolling out services and products to spark further adoption and consumption of the public cloud environment.

A number of Azure-oriented partner offerings were unveiled at Microsoft Inspire 2018, the company’s annual partner conference, which concludes today, July 19, in Las Vegas. The launches run the gamut from hybrid cloud bundles to workspace products, but all aim to take advantage of Azure’s market momentum and its status as a pivotal Microsoft platform.

Jason Zander, executive vice president of the Microsoft Azure team in the company’s cloud and AI group, said Azure experienced 100% year-over-year consumed revenue growth. That growth, he said, translates into partner momentum, noting that every dollar of Azure cloud consumption drives $5 of partner services business.

In addition, the Microsoft Azure platform lies at the heart of the company’s vision of a ubiquitous computing fabric that extends from the edge to the cloud.

“The core of the intelligent cloud and the intelligent edge is Microsoft Azure,” Zander said.

Partners build on the Microsoft Azure platform

Partners showcasing offerings for the Microsoft Azure platform at Inspire included Dell EMC, which expanded its Azure Stack hardware bundle debuted in 2017. Azure Stack extends the Azure public cloud to private settings, such as service provider or end customer data centers.

Dell EMC’s new Azure Stack additions include an all-flash VxRack Azure Stack configuration option, an automated hyper-converged infrastructure (HCI) patch and updated orchestration tool, and SecureVM integration available via Azure Marketplace. In addition, Dell EMC now lets customers and partners acquire Azure Stack through its Cloud Flex pay-as-you-go consumption model, which the company offers to encourage adoption of its HCI product line. Dell EMC treats its Azure Stack hardware bundles as an HCI offering.

The upshot for Dell EMC’s channel partners is the ability to rapidly roll out Azure Stack to customers, said Paul Galjan, senior director of product management and engineering for Azure Stack at Dell EMC.

Chart showing top IaaS providers worldwide
Microsoft Azure has solidified its position among the top IaaS options.

“From a channel partner perspective this is something their customers are interested in,” Galjan said. “Any customer that has a Microsoft cloud strategy will be talking to them about Azure Stack.”

Azure-based offerings on the rise

One of the clear takeaways from Inspire is the rise in Azure-based solutions.
Max PrugerChief revenue officer, CloudJumper

Meanwhile, CloudJumper, a workspace-as-a-service platform provider, launched Cloud Workspace for Azure at Microsoft Inspire 2018. The platform links together CloudJumper’s Cloud Workspace Management Suite with Microsoft’s Remote Desktop modern infrastructure (RDmi). The integration provides increased visibility into users’ Azure, Office 365 and Cloud Workspace experiences, according to the company.

Max Pruger, chief revenue officer at CloudJumper, cited the uptick in offerings around the Microsoft Azure platform as a key development at the partner conference.

“One of the clear takeaways from Inspire is the rise in Azure-based solutions, as organizations further integrate their cloud-forward IT initiatives,” he said. “Microsoft is capitalizing on this, and the conference is relaying their vision to build out the modern workspace with the integration of [Office] 365, Azure Active Directory Sync and RDmi — all built on top of the Azure stack.”

Other partners showcasing Microsoft Azure platform offerings include Atmosera, a managed Azure solutions provider based in Beaverton, Ore. The company featured its Three-Tier Azure Management Suite at Microsoft Inspire 2018. The suite delivers managed, comanaged and self-managed Azure solutions.

“There’s a tremendous opportunity — and an equal amount of pressure to do so — for Microsoft partners to innovate, embrace new capabilities and leverage Azure for business outcomes,” said Jon Thomsen, CEO at Atmosera.

The case for cloud storage as a service at Partners

Partners HealthCare relies on its enterprise research infrastructure and services group, or ERIS, to provide an essential service: storing, securing and enabling access to the data files that researchers need to do their work.

To do that, ERIS stood up a large network providing up to 50 TB of storage, so the research departments could consolidate their network drives, while also managing access to those files based on a permission system.

But researchers were contending with growing demands to better secure data and track access, said Brent Richter, director of ERIS at the nonprofit Boston-based healthcare system. Federal regulations and state laws, as well as standards and requirements imposed by the companies and institutions working with Partners, required increasing amounts of access controls, auditing capabilities and security layers.

That put pressure on ERIS to devise a system that could better meet those heightened healthcare privacy and security requirements.

“We were thinking about how do we get audit controls, full backup and high availability built into a file storage system that can be used at the endpoint and that still carries the nested permissions that can be shared across the workgroups within our firewall,” he explained.

Hybrid cloud storage as a service

At the time, ERIS was devising security plans based on the various requirements established by the different contracts and research projects, filling out paperwork to document those plans and performing time-intensive audits.

It was then that ERIS explored ClearSky Data. The cloud-storage-as-a-service provider was already being used by another IT unit within Partners for block storage; ERIS decided six months ago to pilot the ClearSky Data platform.

“They’re delivering a network service in our data center that’s relatively small; it has very fast storage inside of it that provides that cache, or staging area, for files that our users are mapping to their endpoints,” Richter explained.

From there, automation and software systems from ClearSky Data take those files and move them to its local data center, which is in Boston. “It replicates the data there, and it also keeps the server in our data center light. [ClearSky Data] has all the files on it, but not all the data in the files on it; it keeps what our users need when they’re using it.”

Essentially, ClearSky Data delivers on-demand primary storage, off-site backup and disaster recovery as a single service, he said.

All this, however, is invisible to the end users, he added. The researchers accessing data stored on the ClearSky Data platform, as well as the one built by ERIS, do not notice the differences in the technologies as they go about their usual work.

ClearSky benefits for Partners

ERIS’ decision to move to ClearSky Data’s fully managed service delivered several specific benefits, Richter said.

He said the new approach reduced the system’s on-premises storage footprint, while accelerating a hybrid cloud strategy. It delivered high performance, as well as more automated security and privacy controls. And it offered more data protection and disaster recovery capabilities, as well as more agility and elasticity.

Richter said buying the capabilities also helped ERIS to stay focused on its mission of delivering the technologies that enable the researchers.

“We could design and engineer something ourselves, but at the end of the day, we’re service providers. We want to provide our service with all the needed security so our users would just be able to leverage it, so they wouldn’t have to figure out whether it met the requirements on this contract or another,” Richter said.

He noted, too, that the decision to go with a hybrid cloud storage-as-a-service approach allowed ERIS to focus on activities that differentiate the Partners research community, such as supporting its data science efforts.

“It allows us to focus on our mission, which is providing IT products and services that enable discovery and research,” he added.

Pros and cons of IaaS platform

Partners’ storage-as-a-service strategy fits into the broader IaaS market, which has traditionally been broken into two parts: compute and storage, said Naveen Chhabra, a senior analyst serving infrastructure and operations professionals at Forrester Research Inc.

[Cloud storage as a service] allows us to focus on our mission, which is providing IT products and services that enable discovery and research.
Brent Richterdirector of ERIS at Partners HealthCare

In that light, ClearSky Data is one of many providers offering not just cloud storage, but the other infrastructure layers — and, indeed, the whole ecosystem — needed by enterprise IT departments, with AWS, IBM and Google being among the biggest vendors in the space, Chhabra said.

As for the cloud-storage-as-a-service approach adopted by Partners, Chhabra said it can offer enterprise IT departments flexibility, scalability and faster time to market — the benefits that traditionally come with cloud. Additionally, it can help enterprise IT move more of their workloads to the cloud.

There are potential drawbacks in a hybrid cloud storage-as-a-service setup, however, Chhabra said. Applying and enforcing access management policies in an environment where there are both on-premises and IaaS platforms can be challenging for IT, especially as deployment size grows. And while implementation of cloud-storage-as-a-service platforms, as well as IaaS in general, isn’t particularly challenging from a technology standpoint, the movement of applications on the new platform may not be as seamless or frictionless as promoted.

“The storage may not be as easily consumable by on-prem applications. [For example,] if you have an application running on-prem and it tries to consume the storage, there could be an integration challenge because of different standards,” he said.

IaaS may also be more expensive than keeping everything on premises, he said, adding that the higher costs aren’t usually significant enough to outweigh the benefits. “It may be fractionally costlier, and the customer may care about it, but not that much,” he said.

Competitive advantage

ERIS’ pilot phase with ClearSky Data involves standing up a Linux-based file service, as well as a Windows-based file service.

Because ERIS uses a chargeback system, Richter said the research groups his team serves can opt to use the older internal system — slightly less expensive — or they can opt to use ClearSky Data’s infrastructure.

“For those groups that have these contracts with much higher data and security controls than our system can provide, they now have an option that fulfills that need,” Richter said.

That itself provides Partners a boost in the competitive research market, he added.

“For our internal customers who have these contracts, they then won’t have to spend a month auditing their own systems to comply with an external auditor that these companies bring as part of the sponsored research before you even get the contract,” Richter said. “A lot of these departments are audited to make sure they have a base level [of security and compliance], which is quite high. So, if you have that in place already, that gives you a competitive advantage.”

Microsoft announces 2018 Partner of the Year winners and finalists | Stories

Partners recognized for outstanding solutions built on Microsoft technology

REDMOND, Wash. — June 7, 2018 — Microsoft Corp. on Thursday announced the winners and finalists of the Microsoft 2018 Partner of the Year Awards. The annual awards recognize top Microsoft partners demonstrating excellence in innovation and implementation of customer solutions based on Microsoft technology. Award winners and finalists from around the world will be recognized at Microsoft Inspire taking place July 15–19, 2018, in Las Vegas, Nevada.

This year, Microsoft acknowledged partners in 39 categories celebrating each of the solution areas, industries and many more. The award finalists and winners were selected from more than 2,600 nominations collected from 115 different countries worldwide based on their commitment to customers, their solution’s impact on the market and exemplary use of Microsoft technologies.

“It’s an honor to recognize the 2018 Partner of the Year Award winners and finalists, which represent the best and most forward-thinking innovators coming out of our partner community,” said Gavriella Schuster, corporate vice president, One Commercial Partner, Microsoft. “These companies are bringing cutting-edge solutions to complex business challenges and providing digital transformation opportunities for their customers. Congratulations to each winner and finalist.” Schuster has also congratulated the winners and finalists in a blog post on the Microsoft Partner Network website.

Categories, winners and finalists appear below. A complete list, including the Microsoft Country Partner of the Year Award winners for 2018, is available at https://partner.microsoft.com/en-us/inspire/awards. See the highlights video.

Alliance Global Commercial ISV Partner of the Year

  • Winner: AT&T

Alliance SI Partner of the Year

  • Winner: Accenture/Avanade

Application Innovation Partner of the Year

  • Winner: Larsen & Toubro Infotech
  • Finalist: Datacom
  • Finalist: Neal Analytics

Artificial Intelligence Partner of the Year

  • Winner: Insight
  • Finalist: KPMG Consulting Co. Ltd.
  • Finalist: eSmart Systems
  • Finalist: RedPoint Global Inc.

 Azure Compete Partner of the Year

  • Winner: GTPLUS
  • Finalist: Wragby Business Solutions and Technologies Ltd.
  • Finalist: Convergent Computing (CCO)
  • Finalist: Infront Consulting Group

 Big Data Analytics Partner of the Year

  • Winner: Cognizant Technology Solutions
  • Finalist: WIPRO
  • Finalist: BlueGranite Inc.
  • Finalist: Neudesic

Customer Experience Partner of the Year

  • Winner: Content and Code
  • Finalist: Quadrasystems.net India Private Ltd.
  • Finalist: Insight
  • Finalist: Qorus Software

Data Estate Modernization Partner of the Year

  • Winner: pmOne AG
  • Finalist: Northdoor plc
  • Finalist: Cognizant Technology Solutions
  • Finalist: Datometry

Datacenter Transformation Partner of the Year

  • Winner: Ensono
  • Finalist: 10th Magnitude
  • Finalist: Hanu Software Inc.
  • Finalist: Rackspace 

DevOps Partner of the Year

  • Winner: Xpirit Netherlands
  • Finalist: Canarys Automations Private Ltd.
  • Finalist: InCycle Software
  • Finalist: Nebbia Technology

Dynamics 365 for Field Service Partner of the Year

  • Winner: Velrada
  • Finalist: eCraft Oy Ab
  • Finalist: Hitachi Solutions Ltd.
  • Finalist: DXC Eclipse

Dynamics 365 for Talent Partner of the Year

  • Winner: SAGlobal
  • Finalist: eBECS

Dynamics Customer Service Partner of the Year

  • Winner: eBECS
  • Finalist: Fusion5
  • Finalist: Accenture/Avanade
  • Finalist: PowerObjects, an HCL Technologies company

Dynamics for Finance and Operations Partner of the Year

  • Winner: Accenture/Avanade
  • Finalist: Infosys Ltd.
  • Finalist: AKA Enterprise Solutions (Formerly InterDyn AKA)
  • Finalist: Hitachi Solutions

Dynamics Sales Partner of the Year

  • Winner: NuSoft
  • Finalist: Cognizant Technologies
  • Finalist: KORUS Consulting
  • Finalist: Ecuity Edge

Education Partner of the Year

  • Winner: Campus Management
  • Finalist: ITWORX Education
  • Finalist: BrightBytes

Financial Services Partner of the Year

  • Winner: Vector Risk
  • Finalist: V.R.P. Veri Raporlama Programlama Bilisim Yazilim ve Danismanlik Hizmetleri Ticaret A.S.
  • Finalist: Finastra
  • Finalist: Insight

Government Partner of the Year

  • Winner: Axon Enterprises Inc.
  • Finalist: Black Marble
  • Finalist: Pythagoras Communications Ltd.
  • Finalist: EY

 Health Partner of the Year

  • Winner: Solidsoft Reply
  • Finalist: KPMG LLP
  • Finalist: DXC Eclipse
  • Finalist: KenSci

Indirect Provider Partner of the Year

  • Winner: Tech Data
  • Finalist: Westcoast Ltd.
  • Finalist: Ingram Micro

Intelligent Communications Partner of the Year

  • Winner: Sada Systems
  • Finalist: Communicativ
  • Finalist: bluesource
  • Finalist: Modality Systems Ltd.

Internet of Things Partner of the Year

  • Winner: Crestron Electronics
  • Finalist: Energisme
  • Finalist: Fathym Inc.
  • Finalist: Marquam

Learning Partner of the Year

  • Winner: Digicomp Academy AG
  • Finalist: Institute for Information Industry

Manufacturing Partner of the Year

  • Winner: ICONICS
  • Finalist: ABB Group
  • Finalist: Icertis Inc.
  • Finalist: PROS Inc.

Media & Communications Partner of the Year

  • Winner: Advvy
  • Finalist: NV Interactive
  • Finalist: Avid
  • Finalist: Hewlett-Packard Enterprise LLC

Microsoft CityNext Partner of the Year

  • Winner: Bentley Systems
  • Finalist: Meemim Inc.
  • Finalist: Black Marble
  • Finalist: Cubic Transportation Systems

Modern Desktop (formerly Powered Device) of the Year

  • Winner: Insight
  • Finalist: AMTRA Solutions
  • Finalist: Dell
  • Finalist: DXC

Modern Workplace Transformation Partner of the Year

  • Winner: Dimension Data
  • Finalist: Logicalis
  • Finalist: Sulava Oy
  • Finalist: Otsuka Corp.

Open Source Applications & Infrastructure on Azure Partner of the Year

  • Winner: 10th Magnitude
  • Finalist: Nordcloud
  • Finalist: 4ward
  • Finalist: SNP Technologies Inc.

Open Source Data & AI Partner of the Year

  • Winner: Cloudera
  • Finalist: PT Mitra Integrasi Informatika
  • Finalist: KORUS Consulting
  • Finalist: Application Consulting Training Solutions

Partner for Social Impact Partner of the Year

  • Winner: ProServeIT Corp.
  • Finalist: Alianza Corp.
  • Finalist: New Signature

Partner Seller Excellence in Technology, Sales and/or Licensing Partner of the Year

  • Winner: Erik Moll, COMPAREX Canada
  • Finalist: Michael Jonsson, Avanade
  • Finalist: Andrew Mackay, Teambase
  • Finalist: Mark Pierce, New Signature

Platform Partner of the Year

  • Winner: Provance
  • Finalist: Anywhere.24 GmbH
  • Finalist: Joint Submission: PROS Inc., Icertis and VeriPark
  • Finalist: SAGlobal

Power BI Partner of the Year

  • Winner: Slalom
  • Finalist: Truenorth Corp.
  • Finalist: IT-Logix AG
  • Finalist: Teambase

Project and Portfolio Management Partner of the Year

  • Winner: CPS
  • Finalist: Prosperi
  • Finalist: Projectum
  • Finalist: Sensei Project Solutions

Retail Partner of the Year

  • Winner: Teambase
  • Finalist: Blue Yonder GmbH
  • Finalist: Synerise S.A.
  • Finalist: Tallan Inc.

SAP on Azure Partner of the Year

  • Winner: Accenture/Avanade
  • Finalist: Infosys Ltd.
  • Finalist: CoreToEdge
  • Finalist: Brillio

Security and Compliance Partner of the Year

  • Winner: Oxford Computer Group – UK
  • Finalist: NELITE
  • Finalist: Joint Submission: Mavim B.V. & Motion10
  • Finalist: Planet Technologies 

Teamwork Partner of the Year

  • Winner: Adopt & Embrace
  • Finalist: Quadrasystems.net India Private Ltd.
  • Finalist: Rapid Circle
  • Finalist: Content and Code

About Microsoft Inspire

Microsoft Inspire provides Microsoft’s partner community with access to key marketing and business strategies, leadership, and information regarding specific customer solutions designed to help partners succeed in the marketplace. Along with informative learning opportunities covering sales, marketing, services and technology, Microsoft Inspire is an ideal setting for partners to garner valuable knowledge from their peers and from Microsoft. More information can be found at https://partner.microsoft.com/en-us/inspire.

About Microsoft

Microsoft (Nasdaq “MSFT” @microsoft) enables digital transformation for the era of an intelligent cloud and an intelligent edge. Its mission is to empower every person and every organization on the planet to achieve more.

For more information, press only:

Microsoft Media Relations, WE Communications, (425) 638-7777,

[email protected]

Note to editors: For more information, news and perspectives from Microsoft, please visit the Microsoft News Center at http://news.microsoft.com. Web links, telephone numbers and titles were correct at time of publication, but may have changed. For additional assistance, journalists and analysts may contact Microsoft’s Rapid Response Team or other appropriate contacts listed at http://news.microsoft.com/microsoft-public-relations-contacts.