Capgemini to orchestrate Microsoft cloud products with Skysight offering

Capgemini hopes to allay fears over 'data sovereignty' for European users by running loads in local data centers

Capgemini is introducing a hybrid cloud orchestration service focused on Microsoft products, although enterprises will be able to manage any load with the offering, including applications running on Linux, the company said.

The core of the service is Microsoft software, including Windows Server 2012, System Center 2012 and Windows Azure, wrapped with billing, service management, dashboards and governance tools integrated by Capgemini, said Ron Tolido, the company's CTO for continental Europe.

Two aspects of the cloud service are visible to the customer, he said.

First, there's a set of dashboards that give financial oversight to the CFO, insight into operations to the CIO, and availability data to the CTO.

The second element is an online catalog of Microsoft apps such as SharePoint as a Service, Lync Online, or Messaging as a Service. The apps are available on a pay-per-use basis, and end users can provision them through a self-service interface. Provisioning a new service isn't instantaneous because Skysight's governance tools will route the request to a person for approval.

"If you want to launch a new service you should usually think in terms of a few hours, because someone in the enterprise has to authorize it."

That will still seem quick to most users, though, he said: "Even a couple of hours is much better than what they are used to."

Businesses in the U.K., France and the Netherlands will be able to sign up for Skysight by the end of September, using it to manage private, hybrid or public cloud workloads running on their own infrastructure or in local Capgemini data centers. Around the same time, customers in the U.S. will be offered a public cloud version of the service. Capgemini plans to roll out the service in other countries later, said Tolido.

The presence of a local data center in the countries where Capgemini is launching the service is important, because of the concerns some enterprises have about data privacy laws, he said.

"Data sovereignty is often a complex matter that goes beyond IT and business functions. We are able to guarantee that the data stays in the country. We are very sure and very clear about where the data resides."

Peter Sayer covers open source software, European intellectual property legislation and general technology breaking news for IDG News Service. Send comments and news tips to Peter at peter_sayer@idg.com.

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