At its start, IBM's Cloud Service Provider Platform will include nine partners, which Clark called value-added service partners and partners that enhance the new Cloud Service Provider Platform.
"It's an ecosystem of partners adding value on top of the platform and enhancing the platform itself," he said.
So far, partners that have signed on with the new platform include VoIP and communications provider Broadsoft; software development and SaaS player Corent Technology; location-based services provider deCarta; on-demand services aggregator and distributor Jamcracker; networking vendor Juniper Networks; storage and data management company NetApp; policy management and billing provider Openet; cloud management platform RightScale; and cloud and Web application development platform WaveMaker. Several cloud builders; application, technology and infrastructure providers; resellers and solution providers; and cloud aggregators will also take advantage of the platform, IBM said. These partners, Clark said, have access to IBM's channel and its go-to-market strategy.
With the IBM Cloud Service Provider Platform, IBM is looking to bring service providers on board with cloud computing and give them a chance to grab a piece of a growing market, which could hit $89 billion by 2015, IBM estimated.
The platform, which is aimed squarely at service providers, ties together hardware, software and services for communications providers to deliver cloud services to their customers while also enabling them to launch new applications and services on their infrastructure such as collaboration applications, customer relationship management services, data storage, backup and recovery, and industry-specific applications like claims-processing or specialized mobile applications. IBM's Service Delivery Manager technology powers the platform. The Service Delivery Manager is also at the core of IBM's CloudBurst private cloud offerings. The software enables swift deployment of applications and can automate the deployment, monitoring and management of cloud computing services. The platform will let service providers provision tens of thousands of virtual machines hourly and run millions of VMs concurrently.
Next: Meeting Service Provider Expectations