Managed Services Firm All Covered Launches Cloud Server Offering

The company introduced All Covered Cloud Servers for its SMB customers who want to leverage scalable private clouds. All Covered CIO Tim Crawford said the new offering will give those SMB clients access to enterprise-level data center power at an affordable cost.

"Cloud is the last piece for us," Crawford said. "Now we can provide cloud services as well as on-premise managed services."

All Covered said its Cloud Servers are housed on secure, enterprise-class data centers that are SAS70 type II compliant. The servers themselves are Windows-based and have configurable storage and memory options and are well-suited for hosting applications such as Exchange, Microsoft SQL, SharePoint and other business applications, according to the company.

Crawford said All Covered Cloud Servers will mesh well with the company's already-strong managed services offerings. While some customers may want to house certain applications or infrastructure on-site and rely on All Covered's managed services, those clients may want to ability to leverage cloud computing for other needs. "It's a comprehensive cloud offering that really fleshes out the rest of our services and augments our managed services business," Crawford said.

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All Covered, a division of Konica Minolta Business Solutions, sees strong potential for cloud adoption in the SMB market. While conventional wisdom suggests that enterprises are adopting cloud services faster than smaller businesses with little or no IT budgets, Crawford said it’s the SMB clients who are adopting cloud solutions faster than larger companies because they don't have the ability to manage big data centers or employee IT staff. "We see enterprises slow to adopt cloud while smaller businesses are really embracing it," he said.

Furthermore, Crawford said he sees a paradigm shift for the SMB market where fewer and fewer businesses will be investing in their own dedicated servers. "The servers that are being bought today, I don't think they are going to be replaced," Crawford said. "I think a lot of those small and medium-sized businesses, when the next hardware refresh comes, are going to move to the cloud or some kind of shared infrastructure solution. That's a fundamental shift in IT purchasing."

Over the last two years, All Covered has made headlines with an aggressive acquisition strategy, buying a number of regional MSPs and solution providers; the company recently purchased LAN Associates of New York and PMV Technologies of Detroit. Crawford said that All Covered will look at buying cloud services firms if the situation is right, but added that the company is much more focused on acquiring regional MSPs with strong vertical expertise like LAN Associates and PMV Technologies.