We bring the best of both worlds: On-prem and cloud: Rahul Kurkure, Director, Cloud.in

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Rahul Kurkure, Director, Cloud.in
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Hostin Services comes from a managed services background, with a firm hold on managing services, maintaining infrastructure, and the uptime requirements. This is the core advantage over the traditional players, says Rahul Kurkure, Director, Cloud.in to CRN

Please give a brief about Cloud.in.
Cloud.in, formed in October, 2016, is a business unit of Hostin Services. It has been operational since 1999, offering IT managed services and hosting solutions. Given the shift towards cloud, we have created a separate vertical for the opportunity offered by the cloud services. We are an AWS advanced consulting partner and channel partner. The company began with being a registered partner followed by being promoted to the standard partner category. Hostin Services has customers across the country and we have sales and marketing offices in all the metros in India. The company is about to complete the public sector competencies, post which the company will be able to serve clients in the government sector.

What services do you provide as an AWS advanced consulting partner and channel partner?
We are focussed on three areas: migrations, wherein we help the enterprise and SMBs to migrate from their on-premise data centers to AWS cloud; managed services segment, wherein we manage the customers’ AWS workloads; and optimising the existing cloud infrastructure by taking advantage of cost benefits and other savings. We are targeting and also have current customers in the media and entertainment, digital agencies, automotive and manufacturing, payment gateways etc.

What are your key differentiators?
Hostin Services comes from a managed services background, with a firm hold on managing services, maintaining infrastructure, and the uptime requirements. This is the core advantage over the traditional players. Our understanding of the problems of on-premise and cloud setup is on an even keel. We already have a data centre setup, as a part of our hosting services portfolio and now, we are a part of the AWS community.

How has AWS helped in taking your business to the next level?
AWS has changed our mindset; they have helped in coming out of the on-premise and co-location mindset. After signing in as an AWS partner, we weren’t sure about the kind of opportunity that AWS will provide us. But the AWS partner account managers hand-held us and trained our staff in the required skills to get us into the groove of acting as an AWS consulting and channel partner.

Which partner programmes from AWS have you undergone?
AWS conducts workshops, advises on areas to focus, opportunities in the market, skills to be build and they train our staff to build those skills. They also provide the requisite tools, and we make sure that they are used optimally by our staff. We have our own skills; however additional support, hand-holding, training from AWS further empowers us to provide more efficient services. The kind of efforts taken by AWS to empower us are different from other cloud providers.

What are the challenges faced by Hostin Services while approaching potential customers?
The challenge we face is to be popular in the marketplace. It’s important to have brand awareness about the company. It assures that 50 per cent of the work is done. AWS will give us an edge in bringing the goodwill for Hostin Services, and get more accounts. A challenge from the enterprise perspective is that the middle-level or junior manpower in the IT function is feeling threatened, whether their jobs will be lost or they could be losing control over the critical workloads being moved onto the cloud. They are more open to experimentation with non critical applications ported to cloud.

Which are some of the new age technologies you are working on?
We are working on building skills pertaining to AI, ML, Big Data, voice design and voice related technologies. We want to create our own IP in these areas. The strategy is to increase the stickiness for our customers to help them move to cloud followed up by assisting them to work on the next generation technologies like AI and ML, which will be processed on the cloud. Hostin Services wants to increase the manpower strength by 100 per cent in the next 12 months.


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