70 percent of Asian businesses favor Asian providers — survey

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The global pandemic was a catalyst in pushing for and achieving digitalization. Thus, the importance of hybrid cloud solutions for businesses navigating through the global health challenge was heavily underscored.

In the Philippines, the Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT) has recently amended its “Cloud First Policy,” acknowledging the vital role of ICT in the transition to the “new normal,” which some now call as the “next normal.”

As the number of companies ramping up their cloud migration systems amid the pandemic increased, Alibaba Cloud, through an independent research organization, commissioned “The Role of Cloud in Asia and Confidence in Asian Innovation Survey.”

The survey, participated by 1,000 businesses from six areas across Asia, revealed that 65 percent of Asian businesses in Asia have already adopted at least one technology solution from an Asian provider, while more respondents, about 72 percent, said they believe an Asian provider can provide better solutions because they have a better sense of understanding of the Asian mindset.

Conducted in late 2020, the survey shed some light on the changing behavior and outlook of Asian enterprises towards cloud solutions, and also looked closely into the changing priorities of enterprises at the time of their migration.

Survey participants include the Philippines, Hong Kong, Malaysia, Singapore, India and Indonesia.

A vast majority (85 percent) feel that cloud-native solutions have helped them cope with the impact of the pandemic and 69 percent reported that a hybrid cloud approach supported them in disaster recovery and business continuity planning. This proved especially true in regions like Indonesia, where 64 percent of businesses see hybrid cloud solutions as critical to their longevity.

“It is very encouraging to see the high level of confidence in Asian innovation among businesses in the region. With digitalization so strong a trend, especially on the back of the pandemic, we believe there will be many new opportunities to build on the strong perception of the region’s cloud capabilities,” said Selina Yuan, President for International Business, Alibaba Cloud Intelligence.

The priorities of users are evolving

Given the increasing demand for hybrid cloud solutions in Asia, Alibaba Cloud revamped its strategy and launched a Hybrid Cloud Partner Program to upgrade its product offerings. The aim of these initiatives is to help businesses, especially small- and medium-enterprises (SMEs), digitally transform their operations and capture the public cloud’s highly elastic, scalable and accessible benefits while simultaneously supporting them with their private cloud needs.

The pandemic has underscored the role of cloud-based tools while driving a shift in the priorities of customers. Before the pandemic, the ability to integrate with existing IT infrastructure was the primary concern of businesses thinking about adopting a cloud solution. After it began, a vendor’s security credentials became the most important (58 percent), particularly among businesses in markets like the Philippines (62 percent).

“Alibaba Cloud solutions are easy to be deployed, ready to be integrated into companies’ existing IT infrastructure and secure in many ways. During the pandemic, we see our clients’ priority shift more towards operation security and cost efficiency. Given their evolving needs, we want to ensure our solutions are going to meet their demands,” added Yuan.

Asian cloud providers enjoy a positive perception

The survey found that the perception of cloud-based service providers is very positive. A substantial majority (84 percent) of the respondents agree that cloud-based service providers deliver on their promises. In addition, hyperscale cloud providers were discovered to be preferred over global enterprise tech consultants, local third-party partners and in-house teams by 43 percent of Asian businesses.

Reinforcing these findings, 73 percent of businesses feel confident in Asia’s ability to innovate technologically and 65 percent reported having already adopted a solution from a regional provider. Among the regions represented in the survey, 74 percent of Hong Kong companies have adopted local solutions.

Alibaba Cloud is the digital technology and intelligence backbone of the Alibaba Group,

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