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Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 22 February 2019

Over 70% of businesses in EMEA to expand cloud adoption

Cloud and cybersecurity considerations are top of the agenda for tech execs in the region, American technology firm Equinix finds

IT spending is projected to total $973bn in 2019 in EMEA. Image courtesy: Equinix
IT spending is projected to total $973bn in 2019 in EMEA. Image courtesy: Equinix

Some 71 per cent organisations in Europe Middle, East and Africa (EMEA) are aiming to move more of their business functions to the cloud in the coming years, according to a new report.

Cloud computing is the practice of using a network of remote servers hosted on the internet to store, manage and process data, rather than a local server or a personal computer network.

“This reveals the huge shift towards cloud as businesses across EMEA prepare to compete in the digital economy,” said Eric Schwartz, president EMEA at American technology firm Equinix, which issued the findings of the survey on Monday.

Equinix, which operates a global network of data centres, opened its Dubai data centre in early 2013. Last year, it also inked a joint venture with Omani telco Omantel to develop a data centre in Muscat, where carriers, content and cloud providers can house their critical data and engage services such as data backup, recovery, processing, management and distribution.

Cloud and cybersecurity considerations together are top of mind for technology executives across the region, said the report.

For 48 per cent of survey respondents, the adoption of cloud-based services represented one of the top two factors that will impact their business in the future - second only to cybersecurity risks and breaches (53 per cent). Nearly 70 per cent of the respondents are still worried about risks around cloud adoption.

“Cybersecurity risks and breaches are of course a matter for close attention but must not prevent businesses from undergoing digital transformation,” said Mr Schwartz.

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The survey polled 1,206 senior IT decision-makers across EMEA region for the report.

Almost 60 per cent of regional technology leaders cited proximity to cloud service providers as an integral factor when choosing a data centre in their local market. Eyeing lucrative opportunities, global tech giants such as Oracle, Amazon Web Services (AWS) and Microsoft have already announced they will set up their own data centres in the Middle East this year.

Increased IT spending in the region will further facilitate cloud adoption in the region. It is projected to total $973 billion in 2019 in EMEA, an increase of 2 per cent from the estimated spending of $954bn in 2018, according to the researcher Gartner.

Updated: February 5, 2019 02:50 PM

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