MAPping the Cloud: Aliyun Announces Marketplace Alliance Programme

Aliyun, the cloud-computing and IT infrastructure subsidiary of the Alibaba Group and China’s largest cloud-computing company, has announced its involvement in a new Marketplace Alliance Programme.

Local Partners for a Worldwide Reach

Back in May, Aliyun’s President, Simon Hu, talked about his company’s plan for globalisation, admitting: “how to survive and thrive overseas is a big challenge for Aliyun.” Aliyun plan to open up many more data centres around the world, said Mr Hu, and the company would be “seeking local partners such as experienced companies in the PaaS (Platform as a Service) and SaaS (Software as a Service) areas, as well as developers dedicated to open source projects, to work with us.”

Now it looks like that plan is well on the way, with the announcement of the Marketplace Alliance Programme.

Aliyun puts itself on the MAP

The Marketplace Alliance Programme (MAP) is a global partnership that sees Aliyun join forces with major IT and telecoms companies. MAP “is designed to bring our customers the best cloud computing solutions by partnering some of the most respected technology brands in the world,” said Aliyun Vice President Ethan Yu. “We will continue to bring more partners online to grow our cloud computing ecosystem.”

The benefits are not all one way; while Aliyun will be supported in its overseas endeavours, its partners will look to Aliyun for help in gaining more business in Asia.

Powerful Partners

Equinix, a US data centre and internet exchange provider,, provides its Cloud Exchanges (high- speed interconnection points between private and public cloud infrastructure) to cloud vendors, including Microsoft Azure and Amazon Web Services. MAP will allow cloud customers to access Aliyun’s platform through the Equinix Cloud Exchange in either Hong Kong or Silicon Valley.

“Our goal at Equinix is to provide on-demand and direct access to multiple clouds and multiple networks seamlessly around the globe,” said Chris Sharp, Equinix Vice President for Cloud Innovation. “By joining MAP and offering access to its cloud services on Cloud Exchange, we are one step closer to fulfilling this goal, enabling our multinational customers the ability to expand their cloud-based applications across Asia, in a secure, direct manner.”

Singtel is a Singapore-based IT, telecoms and digital solutions provider. MD of Singtel’s Global Enterprise Business Lim Seng Kong says that through MAP, his company will “provide the springboard for Aliyun to grow its footprint in the Asia-Pacific, which is one of the fastest growing markets for cloud services,” while MAP will allow Singtel to offer more choices in cloud infrastructure platforms to customers in China and globally.

Intel has been working with Aliyun for several years, “optimizing hardware and software technology across the datacenter for Alibaba’s unique workloads,” said the company’s General Manager of Cloud Service Provider Business, Raejeanne Skillern. Now it plans to promote joint Aliyun/Intel technology solutions “based on Intel architecture specifically tailored to the rapidly growing market of international public cloud consumers,” says Skillern.

With other partners including PCCW (a Hong Kong telco and IT company), Towngas (a Hong Kong public utility company) Towngas, LINKBYNET (a French website hosting and cloud services provider) and Dubai holding company Meraas Holdings, it seems Aliyun – and by extension its parent company, e-commerce giant Alibaba  – has gained powerful allies in its bid to expand around the globe.

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