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24 May 2013 by Yevgeniy Sverdlik - DatacenterDynamics
European data center services provider Colt Technology Services has launched an enterprise-grade cloud-infrastructure offering across its entire 20-data center portfolio. The orchestration layer for this infrastructure enables customers to tie management of their cloud resources, resources deployed at Colt data centers and on-premise through a single control plane accessible through the web, the company said.
Colt's cloud spans data centers in the UK, France, Germany, Spain, Italy and Switzerland, but enables a customer to deploy applications regardless of that customer's location. Controls available to the customer through the online portal include provisioning, management and automation of network, infrastructure and storage.
The company's VP of portfolio and strategy Jon Bennett said CIOs have until know had to choose between public cloud and outsourced IT services. “But the ability to scale compute resource should not exclude flexible commercial and service levels that allow the CIO to guarantee business outcomes,” he said.
This is a major hybrid-cloud play by one of Europe's largest data center providers. Colt operates in 22 countries and, in addition to its data centers, has a 43,000km network that spans 39 major European cities where it is plugged into 18,000 buildings.
Hybrid cloud has become the deployment model of choice for companies with legacy applications hosted on traditional infrastructure that want to add cloud to their IT strategy or for companies with new applications that need cloud scalability but have to have access to on-premise data.
Many data center service providers advertise cloud services integrated with traditional dedicated or managed services. Some of the biggest names in the space include CenturyLink-owned Savvis, Rackspace and Verizon's Terremark.
Virtualization giant VMware announced earlier this week that it too was going to become a provider of hybrid-cloud services to enterprises. The company's vCloud Hybrid Service, expected to go into general availability in the third quarter, promises to seamlessly integrate customers' existing vSphere infrastructure on site with public-cloud infrastructure hosted in leased but VMware-operated data centers.
VMware's vCloud services are part of Colt's portfolio of offerings.
Colt is well known for its unusual approach to building out data centers. The company uses prefabricated data center modules to expand capacity at its sites.