IBM is the most popular provider of hosted private cloud services, according to a survey from independent research firm Forrester Research.
The Forrester survey showed that IBM hosted private cloud solutions are preferred twice as much as competitive offerings. In addition, Forrester found that nearly twice as many firms use or plan to use IBM when implementing multiple vendor cloud solutions, compared to the next closest competitor in the survey.
The report, "Adoption Profile: Hosted Private Cloud, North America and Europe, Q3 2014," was based on a survey of 2,255 business and technology leaders, IBM said. Forrester defines hosted private cloud as a category of Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS), where the solution lives off-premises in a hosted environment and compute resources are dedicated and isolated for customers.
For its part, the survey also indicated that the top drivers in choosing to adopt hosted private cloud include improved IT infrastructure and flexibility, lower total cost of ownership for servers, on-demand capacity and scalability, and improved disaster recovery and business continuity.
Forrester noted that survey respondents were concerned about vendor lock-in. However, the report said "standards like OASIS's TOSCA and open source projects like OpenStack provide enterprises the future hope of less lock-in and greater adherence to standards." IBM is a major supporter of open cloud computing and a key contributor of code to the OpenStack and Cloud Foundry projects.
In other IBM Cloud news, earlier this week Big Blue announced that United Business Group (UBG), an IT services firm in Kuwait, selected the IBM Cloud to transform its business into a managed service provider. IBM and UBG will offer a hybrid cloud platform based on OpenStack to deliver customized cloud services to customers in Kuwait. Businesses will be able to have their data located in country, with the option to have the data reside either on premises or off premises. UBG employed IBM Cloud to offer customers in Kuwait the option for subscription-model cloud-based offerings.
UBG also will offer Bluemix to its customers. Bluemix is IBM's Platform as a Service, which helps developers speed up app development. In addition, UBG's new partnership with IBM will enable businesses to choose from a range of hardware configuration options and deploy services from IBM's SoftLayer data centers based on the needs of the workload.
"By offering our customers access to a hybrid cloud platform based on open standards, we will be able to help break down the barriers between clouds and on premises IT systems, providing clients with control, visibility and security as they use both public and private clouds," said James Comfort, IBM's general manager of Cloud Services, in a statement. "Data location across an ever-growing number of clouds is an increasing concern for customers, and we are unveiling new developer services to make this easier to manage.”
IBM recently opened its first office in Kuwait as part of a broad program of investments the company is making across the Middle East. The new office will act as a sales and customer service hub for IBM's offerings in the region.
"We are leveraging IBM Cloud, analytics, mobile and security offerings in order to create high-value, competitively differentiated services," said Muraleedharan Nanoo, managing director at UBG, in a statement. "Our goal is to improve development productivity and reliability to better serve our customers."