Microsoft and consulting powerhouse Capgemini announced an alliance whereby the global solutions provider will sell and support Microsoft's cloud-hosted productivity services.
Microsoft (NASDAQ: MSFT) offers cloud-based versions of Exchange Online, SharePoint Online, Office Live Meeting, Exchange Hosted Services, and Office Communications Online for collaboration and communications under the name Business Productivity Online Suite (BPOS) and hosted in Microsoft data centers around the world.
"As part of the alliance, Capgemini will market and deliver ... BPOS, Microsoft's cloud-based communication and collaboration service, through Capgemini's recently-announced Global Service Line of Infostructure Transformation Services, a unit created to help clients accelerate sustainable cost reduction and access the benefits of cloud computing and software as a service," said a joint statement from the two firms on Tuesday.
Microsoft officially launched its Online Services for Business in November, 2008 and it has racked up a considerable amount of business ever since, according to Microsoft.
"Since our U.S. launch, we've grown to 40 million paying users of Microsoft Online Services ... We're seeing broad adoption across a variety of industries and by companies of all sizes," a Microsoft spokesperson said in an e-mail to InternetNews.com.
As part of the deal, the two companies said they jointly plan to go after all kinds of businesses globally by co-investing in marketing, technical training, and sales activities for the services.
Among other commitments, Capgemini will also train 1,000 consultants who will operate both inside and outside the U.S., as well as create accelerators aimed at easing customers' migration to Microsoft's BPOS hosted solutions.
In addition, Capgemini will sponsor a series of two-day workshops to aid customers in developing a "cloud roadmap."
Paris-based Capgemini, which operates in more than 30 countries, brought in about $11.6 billion in 2009 and has some 90,000 employees worldwide, the joint statement said.
As of last month, BPOS is available in 39 nations and in 45 languages, according to Microsoft.