Global corporate spending on cloud services reached $55bn in the second quarter, according to data from Synergy Research Group
Howard Boville — Foto: Divulgação/IBM
IBM, one of the largest technology companies in the world, is trying to increase its share of the cloud computing market and has Brazil, especially banks, as a niche worth investing in.
Lenders are long-time clients of the company both for the acquisition of mainframe computers, which are the large ones capable of processing a massive volume of information, and cloud computing, a model in which clients pay for using technology resources via the Internet.
For the banking segment, IBM advocates the adoption of a hybrid cloud by companies, which comprises the private cloud, service and on-demand processing allocated within the company’s technology infrastructure, and the public cloud, based on the structure of cloud service providers.
Banks of all sizes are migrating part or all of their technology infrastructure to cloud computing. Itaú Unibanco, for example, should migrate 45% to 50% of its infrastructure to the cloud by the end of the year – currently, 30% of its applications are in the cloud provided by AWS, sources say. AWS, the leader in the global cloud market, is controlled by Amazon.
The offer of hybrid cloud services is IBM’s strategy to gain ground against competitors. In the second quarter, the company known as Big Blue was in the fifth position in the ranking of cloud services and infrastructure in all segments, with a 4% share. AWS leads the pack with 34% of the market, followed by Microsoft (21%), Google (10%), and Alibaba (5%).
Global corporate spending on cloud services reached $55 billion in the second quarter, according to data from Synergy Research Group. “Despite turbulence in currency markets and a much strengthened U.S. dollar, that still represents 29% growth from last year,” the consultancy said.
Banks are also accelerating their cloud investments against a difficult macroeconomic backdrop compounded by the risk of recession in the United States, said Howard Boville, senior vice president and head of IBM Cloud Platform. “All global institutions will do whatever it takes to preserve their margins. And that will include looking more closely at the projects that are bringing value to them,” the executive, also a former chief technology officer at Bank of America, told Valor.
Mr. Boville, who came to Brazil to participate in a panel at the Febraban Tech event last week, sees the migration of applications from Brazilian banks to cloud computing services as more advanced compared to other countries. “A lot of the work being done with Brazilian regulators is paving the way around data privacy and cybersecurity,” he said.
Marcelo Braga, IBM’s CEO for Brazil, agrees with the accelerated migration to the cloud among Brazilian banks and notes that this is not happening across the infrastructure. Mobile banking and internet banking are the first segments banks are moving to the cloud, he said.
Among structural systems, mainframes, which IBM provides, are still dominant among large banks, Mr. Braga said. “This connection [between mainframe and cloud] is what makes products faster in terms of innovation and opens up new opportunities,” he said.
Mr. Boville, who also created a technology best practices council, currently with 120 participating banks worldwide, notes that the advance of “open banking” here and in other markets still worries the industry about the security of smaller lenders.
“If you’re sharing consumer data, it allows you to have open banking and therefore more competition in the market,” he said. “That could mean that small companies that want to enter the market could put consumer data or technology operations at risk to the standard expected of a large lender,” he said.
According to Mr. Boville, who specializes in offering cloud computing tied to regulatory issues, especially in the financial industry, IBM’s proposal is to eliminate this risk with a turnkey cloud offering. “Whether you’re a big bank or a fintech, you inherit the cybersecurity controls, technology operations controls, and all the laws, rules, and regulations that you need to comply with and that the biggest banks operate,” Mr. Boville said.
In the second quarter, IBM reported a net profit of $1.5 billion, up 81% year-over-year, while revenues were up 9% to $15.5 billion. The hybrid cloud services represented 38.1% of total revenue, equivalent to R$5.9 billion in the quarter, up 24% year-over-year. The infrastructure division, which includes mainframes, invoiced $4.2 billion in the period, up 19% year-over-year. Revenue with mainframes increased 69% in the period, according to the company.
*By Daniela Braun — São Paulo
Source: Valor International