Microsoft announces plans to offer cloud services from the UK


Will deliver Microsoft Azure, Office 365 and Dynamics CRM Online from a new UK data centre region

Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella on Tuesday announced plans to offer commercial cloud services from the UK, protecting companies from US-based data exposure requests.

Microsoft Azure and Office 365 will be generally available from local UK-based data centres in late 2016 with Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online following shortly thereafter.

Built on trusted cloud principles of security, privacy and control, compliance and transparency, these services will offer customers data residency in the UK, bringing world class reliability and performance to government organisations, regulated industries and other businesses.

Microsoft also announced completion of the latest phase of expansion for its data centre facilities in Ireland and the Netherlands, both of which serve as cloud computing hubs for European customers. These new cloud offerings and expanded facilities will provide customers with more choice and increased opportunities to innovate more quickly, enabling growth for local economies.

“At Microsoft, our mission is to empower every person and organisation on the planet to achieve more,” said Nadella. “By expanding our data centre regions in the UK, Netherlands and Ireland we aim to give local businesses and organisations of all sizes the transformative technology they need to seize new global growth.”

The new local Microsoft cloud regions will enable data residency for customers in the UK, allowing data to be replicated within the UK for backup and recovery, reduced network distance and lower latency. Services delivered from these UK data centres will create new opportunities for innovation and local economic growth for Microsoft UK’s 25,000-plus partners.

General availability of Microsoft Azure and Office 365 is anticipated in late 2016, with Dynamics CRM Online following shortly thereafter. Microsoft will also offer Azure ExpressRoute to provide customers with the option of a private connection to the cloud.

Said Michel Van der Bel, area vice president and general manager of Microsoft UK: “With a cloud adoption rate of 84% [Cloud Industry Forum] the UK is a global leader in embracing the benefits of cloud-based solutions. Our commitment to offer Microsoft Azure, Dynamics CRM Online and Office 365 from local data centres will help meet such demand, especially for those organisations looking for solutions delivered from data centres based in the UK. This will open opportunity for customers and partners alike to innovate, compete and grow their business using the power of the cloud while adhering to strict standards and regulations like those found in banking, financial services and the public sector.”

And, with today’s announcement, some customers have already expressed desire to embrace Microsoft’s future trusted cloud services to be delivered from the UK. Commented Mike Stone, chief digital and information officer, Ministry of Defence (MOD): “At the MOD, we have a clear mission to deliver the modern, open and flexible IT resources required to ensure our forces have information capabilities tailored to their mission, location and role, accessible through a cost effective and adaptable infrastructure. Microsoft’s plans to offer highly secure, UK-based cloud services is an exciting development and one that will clearly support the MOD in our transformation journey.”

In addition, Microsoft announced the completion of the most recent expansion of its Ireland site and that its data centre facility in Middenmeer, the Netherlands, is now operational.

Both locations serve as hubs for Microsoft cloud services, including Microsoft Azure, Office 365 and Dynamics CRM Online, and will provide additional capacity for customers across Europe, the Middle East and Africa. Each location is built using the latest technology improvements to significantly reduce water, power and energy use.


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