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GCI Launches Azure Products for Channel

GCI has launched a new range of Microsoft Azure related services. The launch provides an early illustration of the benefits of its recent acquisition of Outsourcery’s assets.

Targeted initially at the Partner Channel, GCI can now resell and support Azure virtual machines, storage and connectivity – either as discreet Azure services, or as a hybrid deployment with its own Accredited IaaS. This new initiative builds on product development undertaken by Outsourcery, whose assets were substantively acquired by GCI on the 16th June.

Adrian Thirkill (pictured), CEO at GCI commented, “Coming only two weeks after our acquisition of Outsourcery’s assets, it is fantastic to see the benefits of our integration starting to be delivered so quickly. The further strengthening of our cloud services, and the deepening of our strategic relationship with Microsoft, is great news. It reflects the underlying quality of the people and assets that are now being integrated into GCI.”

Scott Riley, Chief Strategy Officer at GCI added, “This is a nice addition to GCI’s portfolio. We are already a Microsoft Gold Partner for Cloud and Communications, and we already have a substantial footprint in Skype for Business with 120,000 deployed seats. So our investment in our Microsoft partnership runs deep.

We believe that for all sorts of reasons (security, latency, redundancy or sovereignty) customers will invariably have blended infrastructure environment. That hybrid environment may be a mix of private and public cloud alongside on-premise infrastructure. If you properly compare apples with apples, GCI is in fact one of only three UK providers able to provide Azure as a true hybrid deployment. Most providers are in fact pure resellers of Azure, GCI offers more.”

Jon Seddon, Head of Product, commented, “In GCI’s case, its value-add comes from the breadth of its portfolio. Being able to offer unified communications (Skype for Business and other VOIP propositions) for example alongside the Azure portfolio is a big differentiator. And, of course, the convenience of a channel portal and a single bill makes the services easier to consume and manage.

One of GCI’s Channel Partners, Paradise Computing, has been at the forefront of deploying the new proposition. Jonathan Berg, Managing Director at Paradise Computing concluded, “We have been an early adopter of the new GCI services for Microsoft Azure and our confidence in GCI’s technical team has been vindicated as they guided us through a proof of concept project to reproduce a core system we run for an existing customer. This technical support, working in tandem with the might of the Microsoft infrastructure solution and GCI’s billing clarity, provides us with a new and exciting income route for the future.”

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David Dungay

Editor - Comms Business Magazine