Microsoft has announced its decision to invest in data center infrastructure in New Zealand, strengthening the country's cloud native opportunities.
Having greater choice for local options enables New Zealand companies to partake in the global trend for multi-cloud, according to Catalyst Cloud, Kiwi cloud solutions provider.
In fact, according to the April 2020 State of the Cloud report from Flexera, 93% of companies internationally have a multi-cloud strategy, with only 6% using a single public cloud.
Many Catalyst Cloud clients already use a multi-cloud strategy, according to the company, choosing Catalyst Cloud alongside other public cloud provider.
This trend is expected to continue in New Zealand. According to Catalyst Cloud, having another cloud data center is ‘a step in the right direction' when it comes to protecting New Zealand company's data.
However, Microsoft faces some challenges, such as the USA's Cloud Act. This can be used to force USA headquartered companies to share data with the American government, regardless of where that data is held.
Catalyst Cloud managing director Bruno Lago says if Microsoft holds data here in the future, rather than in Australian data centers, it would then become protected from the recent Australian ‘encryption backdoor' law, which forces ICT providers to compromise the safety of their software so the Australian Government can read data stored or transmitted by their customers.
He says, “If Microsoft does implement their intent to keep more kiwi data on-shore, we expect more companies to use Microsoft cloud applications as part of a multi-cloud strategy, in which they also choose another cloud computing provider, with Catalyst Cloud being the natural choice.
He says, “As a kiwi owned and operated business, not only is Catalyst Cloud's client data fully protected by New Zealand data and privacy laws, but our revenues stay here in New Zealand too. This is something we're especially proud of as we work with clients, partners and resellers to help rebuild our local economy in the years ahead.
Lago also commented on the initial investment the company provided for New Zealand's data center infrastructure, and the initial resistance.
He says, “It is good to see Microsoft intend to open a cloud region in New Zealand, recognising the importance of keeping data onshore. “Their recent announcement vindicates Catalyst Cloud's investment early in 2016 to provide three cloud data center regions in Aotearoa, back when the Productivity Commission still doubted NZ's cloud business viability.
“We invested in providing three data center regions because we knew New Zealand needed its own cloud native infrastructure. Kiwi businesses agreed, as our growing client base has shown. Microsoft's decision to follow our lead only affirms that decision," he says.
At present, Catalyst Cloud continues to provide kiwi businesses and government agencies with local, multi-region public cloud.
Lago says, “We'll continue to lead the way in fast development and deployment of open source cloud technology, having been the first to offer infrastructure as a service with the five essential characteristics of cloud computing according to NIST and the first to offer a CNCF certified Kubernetes service in New Zealand.
“We're here to make cloud computing more accessible, with powerful cloud solutions, developed especially for the local market and to help accelerate New Zealand's digital economy, in data centers only powered by renewable energy generating companies.