Microsoft Deepens Cloud Partnership with Capgemini

Microsoft and Capgemini are extending their collaboration efforts on Windows Azure, Microsoft's cloud computing platform, according to a joint announcement this week.

The two companies will focus on helping businesses in 22 countries address their cloud-related needs through Azure. The deal includes a joint investment in marketing, sales and technical training. Paris-based Capgemini plans to train 1,500 developers and architects on the Azure platform. The Capgemini consultancy also will set up a Windows Azure Center of Excellence in Mumbai, India.

One of Capgemini's other tasks under the deal will be to work with third-party software providers that are developing solutions for Azure.

Initial efforts will be focused on markets in North America, Brazil, Belgium, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom. Targeted sectors will include energy, financial services, the public sector and utility companies. Both companies will provide advice on cloud strategies to companies, according to the announcement.

Microsoft and Capgemini are already working with the Dutch police on an Azure pilot program called the "virtual police service," an Internet portal designed to share information among police, safety professionals and civilians.

In May 2010 , the two companies announced a partnership relating to Microsoft Business Productivity Online Services (BPOS), a suite of Microsoft software delivered as services from Microsoft's global datacenters.

Last month, Microsoft upgraded those BPOS applications based on its 2010 brands, calling it "Office 365," and launching services across 40 markets worldwide.

Capgemini currently claims to have "more than 1,000 consultants" already trained on delivering Office 365 solutions.

About the Author

Kurt Mackie is senior news producer for 1105 Media's Converge360 group.